LGBT Pride March set

By: Futch Anthony Inso June 18,2018 - 08:57 PM

THE Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community in Mandaue City is urging Congress to pass the Anti-Discrimination Bill, as they celebrate its first ever Pride March this coming June 24.

Known as the Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression (SOGIE) Equality Bill, lawyer Regal Oliva, City Treasurer of Mandaue City and organizer of the event, said that the LGBT community has long been crying for the passage of the bill.

“As of now, there was no particular law protecting the rights of LGBT. That is why we are asking the senate for its passage,” Oliva said.

Last September 2017, the House of Representatives approved the House Bill 4982 with unanimous votes of 198.

Dinagat Representative Kaka Bag-ao was one of the principal authors of the bill, which seeks to penalize those who will be found practicing discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity or expression.

Under the bill, the following discriminatory acts can be fined of not less than P100,000 but not more than P500,000, or imprisonment of not less than one year but not more than six years or both, depending on the court’s decision: Denial of access to public services; Including SOGIE as a criteria for hiring or dismissal of workers; Refusing admission or expelling students in schools based on SOGIE; Imposing disciplinary actions that are harsher than customary due to the student’s SOGIE; Refusing or revoking accreditation of organizations based on the SOGIE of members; Denying access to health services; Denying the application for professional licenses and similar documents; Denying access to establishments, facilities, and services open to the general public.

He said they are now coordinating with their counterparts in Manila to lobby the passage of the bill that was filed by Sen. Risa Honteveros in the Senate.

“We will submit a position paper in the Senate, which we will present during the Pride March,” he added.

Oliva also slammed some pro-life advocate groups who are against the passage of the anti-discrimination bill, because this might lead to the adoption of same-sex-marriage here in the Philippines.

“The bill only dwells on anti-discrimination. Let’s not be unfair to the LGBT communities and let’s stop the injustices that some of us are experiencing,” he said.

The Pride March on June 24 will start at around 7 p.m. wherein members of the different LGBT groups will parade from the Mandaue Heritage Plaza, going to Ibabao, A.C. Cortes St., Plaridel St. and back to Heritage Plaza.

Bataan 1st District Representative Geraldine Roman is expected to grace the activity. Roman was instrumental in the passage of the bill in Congress, after she delivered an emotional speech asking fellow lawmakers to support the anti-discrimination bill.

Oliva revealed that around 1,800 individuals have already confirmed their participation. The event is open not only to LGBTs from Mandaue, but also from neighboring areas like Cebu City, Talisay City, Consolacion, Liloan and Minglanilla.

“June is a pride month that is happening not only in Mandaue but all over the world. Here in Mandaue, we choose to celebrate it on June 24 in order to raise the level of acceptance of LGBT to the community,” Oliva added.

Around seven floats will also join the parade, while prizes will be given to participants with the best costume, best float, darling of the crowd and largest delegation.

Yesterday, an LGBT flag was also raised in front of the City Hall of Mandaue.

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TAGS: lgbt, LGBT Pride March, March, pride, set

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