Hate Crime Watch, a loose alliance of individuals and groups working to promote and protect the human rights of all people regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) by documenting and seeking justice for hate crimes against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons in the Philippines, today marks the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) with a call on the Philippine government to give attention to the spate of many unsolved killings of LGBT persons in the country and to put a stop to this senseless show of hate.
Since 1996, Hate Crime Watch has collected a total of fifty six (56) media reports of LGBT related killings. Many of the media reports are gleaned from documentation done by crime investigators or media reporters who in turn made conclusions from physical evidence and interviews of survivors or bystanders. Most of the reports seem to dismiss the element of hatred towards LGBTs, focusing instead on presumed other motives such as crimes against property or drunken homicides. Most alarming is the fact that almost all reported cases remain unsolved.
Hate Crime Watch members strongly feel that beneath the surface, homophobia and/or transphobia is the main driving motivation that drives the assailants into committing the acts. In one case, an assailant justified shooting to death a lesbian neighbor because he simply imagined his revulsion that the lesbian victim would be kissing his daughter.
We are sure that there are thousands more of undocumented cases of murders and attempted murders from all parts of the country against LGBT people, but these go unreported or simply uninvestigated. In their memory, we join many LGBT groups and our heterosexual allies and supporters worldwide in observing IDAHO, to end hate crimes against LGBTs in the Philippines by calling for the following demands:
- Demand the Philippines government and civil society organizations to acknowledge and recognize the fact that hate crimes against LGBT people and the underlying homophobia and transphobia are serious problems that must be given attention and solution;
- Ask the government to tap government agencies such as the Philippine National Police and the Commission on Human Rights to lead in addressing the growing cases of LGBT hate crimes by providing programs that will recognize, investigate, document, and prosecute hate crimes based on sexual orientation and gender identity;
- Demand the government to help raise awareness about hate crimes against LGBT people by providing venues to engage government institutions and mainstream groups and individuals with LGBT groups, assist LGBT organizations to gain access to actual and potential case records of hate crimes against LGBTs and engage in finding meaningful solutions to out a stop to hate crimes against LGBT people.
We have to work together to end HATE that promotes and maintains homophobia and transphobia.
STOP THE KILLINGS! LGBT RIGHTS NOW!!
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Published on May 17, 2011 | OutRight Action International an LGBT human rights organization