CHR insists Sogie bill does not create, ascribe new rights
MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) on Thursday (Sept 5) insisted that the controversial Sogie (sexual orientation and gender identity and expression) bill does not create or ascribe new rights.
CHR spokesperson Jacqueline Ann de Guia said the Sogie bill merely “demands recognition” that everyone is born free and equal in dignity and rights.
“We need to recognise that violence and discrimination against the LGBTQIA+ community exist, and that persons of diverse SOGIE are oftentimes being disadvantaged for simply not conforming to some’s conservative notion of what makes males and females,” De Guia said in a statement.
“It is crucial to understand that diverse SOGIE form part of a person’s identity. And if people are harmed for simply asserting themselves as humans, then the State must be ready provide equal protection through laws and policies,” she added.
Senate President Vicente Sotto III earlier renewed his opposition to the bill claiming it would violate women’s rights.
“They should not compare women, the entirety of one half of the world, to a certain group. Women cannot be compared to a group,” Sotto said.
“I hate to say this, but I have to. If you are a man, you will never be a woman no matter what you do because you cannot reproduce,” Sotto said.
But De Guia said: “Sogie, as a term in itself, recognises the diversity of human sexuality and its many forms of expression. Boxing then the debate in the perspective of ‘male versus female rights already highlights some of the issues that the Sogie Equality Bill seeks to address.”
Further, the commission’s spokesperson said the message of Sogie bill remains simple: “Regardless of your sexual orientation and no matter how you opt to express your gender, you are human, as is with everyone else who needs to be respected and given the opportunity to pursue a well-lived and dignified life.”/TSB
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