Ordinance to protect gay rights in Cebu up in next PB session

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CEBU’S lesbian, gays, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community will no longer face discrimination as far as employment opportunities and work conditions are concerned.

A proposed ordinance filed by Provincial Board Member Arleigh Sitoy seeks to protect LGBT employees from being fired or denied promotion due to their gender preference.

“Under his proposed ordinance the enforcement provision, provides that any person who believes that he/she has been discriminated against by employers in the private sector, may file a complaint with the office of the Mayor in the component city or municipality where the private establishment is located within 90 days from the alleged commission of the discriminatory act,” Sitoy said.

mayor’s move

Within five days from receipt of a complaint, the mayor shall immediately refer the case to the Legal Officer or any officer designated by the mayor for investigation and the submission of a corresponding report within 10 days from receipt of the mayor’s referral.

The mayor shall immediately render his/her decision to the complaint and the private establishment concerned.

Any private employer who is found guilty of the prohibited acts for the first offense is liable to pay a fine of not more than P5,000,00, suspension of their business permit for a period of not more than one year for the second offense , and revocation of their business permit for the third offense.

Adel Macaldo, representative of the Ladlad Partylist composed of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders, said he welcomed the proposed ordinance of the Provincial Government of Cebu to protect the rights to employment of the LGBTs.

“One of Ladlad’s platforms is to help find work for LGBTs, who are marginalized in terms of employment,” he said.

“Or if already hired, they are hindered by the pink ceiling, which limits their promotion in the ranks. The timely ordinance of the Cebu Provincial Government is a step in this direction. It shows the maturity of vision and the refreshing open mindedness of our Cebuano leaders.” Macaldo said.

He said they were often the object of workplace discrimination and were usually at the receiving end of verbal abuse, physical assault or even outright rejection or undue dismissal from employment./Correspondent Renan Alangilan

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