Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte has expressed her condemnation over the discrimination experienced by transgender woman Gretchen Diez who was arrested after being barred from entering a comfort room for females inside a shopping plaza in Quezon City.
In a Facebook post, the QC mayor released a statement following the issue and assured the LGBT+ community that they will take necessary actions after the incident.
Mayor Belmonte wrote: “Nakatutok ako sa kaso ni Gretchen Custodio Diez, isang transwoman, na umano’y sapilitang pinalabas sa isang comfort room para sa mga babae ng Farmers Plaza at dinala sa QC Police District 7.
We condemn this kind of discrimination towards members of the LGBT+ community. Ang Quezon City ay ang unang lungsod na may Gender Fair Ordinance upang protektahan ang karapatan ng mga miyembro ng LGBT+. Sa batas na ito, ipinagbabawal ng lungsod ang lahat ng uri ng diskriminasyon, at binibigyan ng proteksyon at paggalang ang dignidad at karapatang-pantao ng lahat, lalung-lalo na ang LGBT+.”
Mayor Belmonte also suggested an “All-Gender Toilets” for commercial establishments and ordered its implementation as soon as possible.
She wrote: “Malinaw na hindi sumusunod ang Farmers Mall sa nasabing ordinansa kung saan lahat ng government offices, private, at commercial establishments ay dapat magtalaga ng “All-Gender Toilets” para sa lahat (Section 5: Affirmative Acts, 1 Affirmative Acts in Employment, Part D).
“Ipinag-utos ko sa Business Permit and Licensing Department (BPLD) na siguraduhin na susunod, sa lalong madaling panahon, ang lahat ng business establishments sa ating Gender Fair Ordinance.”
The QC mayor then assured the LGBT+ community of their continuous efforts to protect their rights, saying: “We assure the members of the LGBT+ community that Quezon City will always protect their rights and be a home for their sexual orientation, gender identity, and expression. We do not support any kind of violence and discrimination in our city. Sa ating LGBT+ community, protektado ang karapatan ninyo sa QC.”
(Photo source: Facebook – @rapplerdotcom/ @MayorJoyBelmonte)