By Chito Chavez
Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte has vowed to equally protect the rights of all individuals in the wake of the recent discrimination committed against a member of the Lesbian, Gay Bisexual, an Transgender (LGBT) community.
Transgender Gretchen Custodio Diez was allegedly pulled out by an employee of Farmers Plaza Mall in Cubao from a comfort room for women and was charged with unjust vexation when an argument ensued.
Diez was taken to the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) station 7 but was later released.
The incident earned the ire of Belmonte who assured that justice will be served with the supposed discriminatory act against Diez.
In condemning the act, Belmonte vowed to look extensively into the matter vowing that heads will roll that will teach the culprits a thing or two about human rights.
“We condemn this kind of discrimination toward members of the LGBT+ community,” said Belmonte.
Belmonte stressed the incident should have not occurred due to the existence of the Gender Fair Ordinance, that prohibits all forms of discrimination against the LGBT+ sector.
“Ang Quezon City ay ang unang lungsod na may Gender Fair Ordinance upang protektahan ang karapatan ng mga miyembro ng LGBT+ (Quezon City is the first local government to pass the Gender Fair Ordinance that protects the members of the LGBT+ community),” said Belmonte.
She noted that under this law, all forms of discrimination are prohibited as emphasis on the promotion of human rights is given priority.
According to the local chief executive, the Farmers Plaza Mall incident clearly violated the said ordinance for its failure to put up an “All-Gender Toilets” for the LGBT+ community.
“Ipinag-uutos 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 (I have ordered the Business Permit and Licensing Department (BPLD) to ensure that all business firms adhere to the Gender Fair Ordinance at the soonest time possible),” said Belmonte.
The mayor also assured 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 atin pong LGBT+ community, protektado ang karapatan ninyo sa QC (To our LGBT+ community, your rights are protected here in QC),” Belmonte concluded.