MANILA – Gabriela Women’s Party led a bike rally on Sunday, June 13 to press for the immediate passage of House Bill 6294 or Gabriela Women’s Party’s version of the sexual orientation and gender identity and expression (SOGIE) Equality Bill.
The GWP organized the Ride with Pride event in partnership with the LGBTQIA+ advocacy group BAHAGHARI.
“This bike rally sends a clear and colorful message to the public that any person, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity and expression (SOGIE), must not be subjected to any form of discrimination and violence,” said Assistant Minority Leader and Gabriela Women’s Party Rep. Arlene Brosas.
The GWP’s version of the SOGIE Bill, which seeks to penalize discriminatory practices on the basis of one’s SOGIE, remains pending at the House Committee on Women and Gender Equality.
The first version of the SOGIE Bill was filed in 2000 during the 11th Congress by late Sen. Miriam Santiago and former Akbayan representative Loretta Rosales.
Brosas revealed that there is no progress on the SOGIE Equality Bill in Congress amid the alarming reports of cases of killing and discrimination among the members of the LGBTQIA+ community.
“We are mounting a show of solidarity to prod the House leadership to tackle the measure once it resumes session in July,” Brosas said.
The event also raised attention on the need to defend Philippine sovereignty, “especially with President Duterte’s shameless surrender of the West Philippine Sea to Beijing and with increased meddling of foreign interests in the local economy.”
“Filipino pride does not reside in the shallow call of Malacanang for every Filipino to be ‘heroes in our own right,’ but in the assertion of freedom and national sovereignty which heroes like Gabriela Silang fought for. Taas-noo dapat nating ipinaglalaban ang soberanya ng bayan, hindi gaya ng pagyukod ni Duterte sa dayuhan,” Brosas said.