Friday, November 27, 2009

Forget Us Not: TDOR Week in UP

As part of the worldwide commemoration of Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR), Society of Transsexual Women of the Philippines (STRAP) and UP Babaylan organized the TDOR week in UP Diliman. Several activities were lined-up for the whole week to remember and memorialize transgender people whose lives were lost due to anti-transgender hate or prejudice, otherwise known as transphobia.

On November 24, an exhibit of the dead at Palma Hall lobby was opened to the public to spread awareness about TDOR. The event was attended by members of both organizations, STRAP and UP Babaylan, and other invited guests. The exhibit displayed reported cases of transgender people that were killed over the past year. These cases are posted on the website.

On its last day, November 27, a forum entitled “TRANSCEND: Stories and struggles of Transpeople in the Philippines” was held at the UP Diliman Gender Office It was attended by all the members, students, faculty and LGBT leaders of different groups and organizations. Hender Gercio, President of UP Babaylan and Gia Alessandra Nolasco, Membership Coordinator of STRAP served as speakers for the forum. It discussed the sensitive topics about transgenderism and also the prevailing issues that transgender people are facing nowadays.

After the forum, a candle-lighting ceremony was done at the Palma Hall steps to honor and commemorate those transgender people who were killed due to transphobia. Each member and guest read a story of the departed and afterwards lighted a candle to signify the life of the transgender person killed due to anti-transgender hate. To cap off the activity, a moment of silence was offered to the victims.

The Transgender Day of Remembrance reminds us that we, as human beings, must value life regardless of whatever background, beliefs, origin that we may have. It also tells us that giving respect to life is the very core of being human. And it is by giving respect that makes the world a better place to live in.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

STRAP's Statement on Transphobic comments in PBB Double Up STOP TRANSPHOBIA SA BAHAY NI KUYA!!! Official Statement of the Society of Transsexual Wom

Official Statement of the Society of Transsexual Women of the Philippines (STRAP) on the recent happenings inside the Pinoy Big Brother (PBB) House involving Rica Paras

“Watch your thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”

She-man. Mumu. Half-half. Samson and Delilah. These are just a few of the derogatory comments heard recently from PBB Double Up Housemates Rob Stumvol, Patrick Villanueva, Hermes Bautista, Mariel Sorino, Yuri Okawa and most especially Rocky Salumbides in referring to Rica Paras. We, her sisters in STRAP, join the rest of the world’s loyal audiences who watch PBB Double Up diligently in expressing our dismay, disappointment and disbelief in this blatant show of anti-transgender prejudice or transphobia. STRAP condemns to the highest degree this senseless bigotry and calls on Big Brother to intervene and put a stop to the hate happening right under his watchful eye.

Ever since Rica entered the PBB House, she has always carried herself well. She has never been a burden to her housemates but instead has proven to be an asset to them with her leadership skills, quick thinking and positive attitude. She has helped in household chores, shared her talents selflessly, related wholeheartedly, and always contributed to the completion of tasks in the best way she could. The whole world knows that Rica has been nothing but a consistent team player, a shoulder to cry on, a loyal friend and a loving and reliable sister to all of her housemates.

We are therefore calling on all the housemates to STOP BASHING RICA for she has done nobody any harm. STOP DISRESPECTING RICA for she has only treated all of them with grace and care. STOP DISPARAGING RICA for she is simply being herself. The asinine machismo being directed at her is the same kind of misogyny that leads to violence against women. The narrow-mindedness being displayed by some of the PBB Double Up housemates is the same kind of bias that leads to abuse, insensitivity and cruelty towards others. This is totally unacceptable behavior and must be stopped at all costs.

This has to stop if we believe in the equality of all persons. This has to stop if we want to create a world where the uniqueness of all is valued. This has to stop if we want to create a better world where kindness, compassion and respect reign, a world that hopefully upholds the inherent dignity of all.STOP TRANSPHOBIA SA BAHAY NI KUYA!

Founded in 2002, the Society of Transsexual Women of the Philippines (STRAP) is the first and only transgender rights advocacy organization in the Philippines. STRAP envisions a nurturing society that affirms, respects and upholds the dignity, the right to self-determination and good quality of life of all.
Website: E-mail:

Monday, November 23, 2009

UP Babaylan’s Statement on Ang Ladlad’s petition to COMELEC

UP Babaylan’s Statement on Ang Ladlad’s petition to COMELEC

The dismissal of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) on Ang Ladlad’s petition for party–list representation for the upcoming 2010 elections has proved once again that discrimination and bigotry are still prevalent in our society. Citing the group as “it tolerates immorality” and “a threat to the youth” are indications that COMELEC has a sense of homophobia among its ranks.

It is depressing to see that an institution mandated by the Constitution to recognize marginalized groups in the society is not doing its job. Much worse, its discretion and judgment are influenced by personal beliefs which, in the first place, violate the very core of our rights to have equal recognition under the law.

As the foremost LGBT students’ support group in the State University and its campuses, UP Babaylan believes that such motions to denounce the rights of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgendered people in the policy–making process must not be tolerated. Equality should reign in our society and to achieve it, we must take a stand and fight for the rights and welfare of the LGBT community.

UP Babaylan joins the whole LGBT community in condemning this upfront narrow–mindedness and prejudice against all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people. We appeal to students, faculty, school officials, and especially to the authority to give LGBT Filipinos the right and protection we deserve.

Let’s be empowered! Fight for your right! Fight for democracy!

* Ang Ladlad is a national organization of LGBT Filipinos. Danton Remoto is the present chair of Ang Ladlad.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Recruitment for 2nd Sem, AY 2009-2010

the leading lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) organization
and students' support group in UP Diliman!


For more information, visit our booth at the AS WALK,
from NOVEMBER 23 to 27,
or contact Hender (09285023505) or Maxi (09058297385).

Saturday, November 14, 2009

11th International Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR Week at UP)

UP Babaylan & the Society of Transsexual Women of the Philippines (STRAP) invite you to commemorate the lives of transgender individuals worldwide whose untimely deaths were caused by hate.

November 24 - 27, 2009, UP Diliman Campus, Quezon City

Nov. 24 (Tue.)
10:00 AM, TDOR Exhibit Opening | Palma Hall Lobby (Exhibit runs... until the 27th)

Nov. 27 (Fri.)
2:30 - 5:00 PM, TRANSCEND: Stories and Struggles of Transpeople in the Philippines (Forum) | UP Diliman Gender Office, Benton Hall

6:00 PM, Candle-lighting Ceremony | Palma Hall Lobby

To participate or for inquiries, contact STRAP Secretary Ms. Mae Emmanuel Hernandez at mobile (0905.352.0943) and email (
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