AUGUST 14, 2019 – An official from the United Nations Women on Wednesday denounced the discrimination of a transgender woman at a mall in Cubao, Quezon City.
In an interview with One News’ Agenda, U.N. Women National Program Officer Charisse Manalo-Jordan expressed concern with how the incident was handled by the mall staff.
“That footage of a trans woman being discriminated is actually a violation of the Safe Spaces Act,” she said.
“Indeed, there’s right to privacy [and] safety but we are also looking at [the] way it was handled in a non-respective manner,” she added.
The Cubao mall went under fire after one of its janitress barred trans woman Gretchen Diez from using a ladies’ restroom on Tuesday.
Diez was then handcuffed and brought to the Quezon City Police District Station 7 as the management initially planned to sue her for unjust vexation after video-recording her confrontation with the janitress.
The incident sparked renewed calls for the passage of the SOGIE Equality Bill, which seeks to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity or expression.
In the same Agenda interview, Plan International CEO Anne-Birgitte Albrectsen also stressed the importance of initiating conversations about keeping streets free of harassment.
“You need to have the conversations with the police [and other] authorities to make them understand the lived realities of young women [and] the transgender community,” she said.
“When you have that conversation, you simply understand those very uncomfortable moments they are experiencing [and] then you start knowing how to act and what kind of actions to take.”
Under the recently passed Bawal Bastos Law, the Philippine National Police and the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority are assigned to arrest violators.
Local government units are likewise mandated to pass ordinances based on the law. (Winona Sadia/ AAD)