Isko Moreno says he respects same-sex union: ‘LGBTQI not only recognized, they are part of my governance’
MANILA, Philippines — Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso on Tuesday said that he will continue to respect same-sex union among members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and intersex (LGBTQI) community.
Since Moreno became mayor of Manila in 2019, it has been the city government’s policy to treat everybody equally regardless of one’s sexual preference.
Moreno, in past interviews, had pointed out that one only has to visit his office to see that the LGBTQI community is well represented and functioning very well with the other members of his staff as well as with City Hall employees in general.
“As long as you recognize their skills, their talents, then they excel in their field of undertaking. I have high respect for people, because love begets love; respect begets respect,” he said.
During The Jessica Soho Presidential Interviews aired over GMA 7 last January 22, Moreno was asked by the host if he supports same sex marriage and he answered “No.”
“Ang instruction kasi ni Jessica Soho, yes or no (ang sagot). At tsaka instruction ni Jessica Soho, one word. Basta sa Maynila, pantay-pantay. Walang lalaki, walang babae, walang bakla, walang tomboy and you know that very well in Manila equal ang lahat. Ngayon at the same manner, meron din silang opportunity maglingkod sa syudad at makikita nyo ‘yan paglabas ng opisina ko,” Moreno told reporters at the Manila City Hall.
“Yung personal ang preference sa buhay eh personal na nila ‘yun and I continue to respect that. I grew up with gays and lesbians, lived with it, dealt with it and I’m happy and proud of being with them. So, I continue to respect their preference, I continue to respect their actions privately, I continue to respect their union of being together,” Moreno added.
The 47-year-old presidential aspirant said that he will continue to respect the rights of the LGBTQI community because they are an important part of society.
“Magsama sila, okay ako dun. Wala akong alinlangan, makukuha nila ‘yung buong paggalang ko at pagkilala,” Moreno said.
Moreno previously stated that members of the LGBTQI community are not just be protected, but would be part of his governance if he is elected president.
The Aksyon Demokratiko standard bearer made the remark during a virtual meeting with the Filipino-American community in San Francisco last October 27, 2021.
“They are not only recognized; they are part of my governance. I have no prejudice with people. As long as you are an asset to the state, you have talents that can be utilized in governance through public service, you are welcome,” Moreno said.
“Sa akin, more than the recognition, is for them, these talents, to be utilized by us. And it’s a matter of policy, you’ve been seeing that in Manila,” he said.
Moreno’s respect for the LGBTQI community was further manifested when he signed on October 29, 2020 Ordinance No. 8695, or the Manila LGBTQI Protection Ordinance, which aims to eliminate “any and all forms of discrimination against LGBTQI solely on the basis of their sexual orientation, gender identity, and expression” or SOGIE.
The ordinance provides for the creation of a Gender Sensitivity and Development Council to oversee its implementation, as well as the establishment of LGBTQI desks in all barangays of the city.
The ordinance likewise mandates business establishments to build gender-neutral toilets “within 3 years” after passage of the ordinance, and failure to do so would be a ground for non-renewal of business permits. Violators will face penalties ranging from fines to imprisonment.
Moreno noted that the reason why the skills and talents of the LGBTQI community have not been fully utilized in the past is due to the prejudice or “personal preference” of past leaders, both in the local and national level.
“Ngayon, may awa ang Diyos naitawid na natin ‘yung tao sa pandemyang ito, nairaos na natin ‘yung negosyo, nakapagbigay na tayo ng trabaho, kasi ‘yun talaga ang gusto ko muna pagtuunan ng pansin. Panatag ang buhay ng tao, ligtas siya, kung sakali naman may pangamba mailigtas natin siya. May hanap-buhay, maayos ang ekonomiya, then ‘yung katulad ng mga ano nabitawan ko na salita, let’s go to Mars. Ibig sabihin, isip pa tayo ng iba pang mga bagay na pwede pang maka-address sa pangangailangan ng ating mga mamayan across sector and that includes our LGBTQI. So, okay tayo diyan,” Moreno said.
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