Chumaporn Taengkliang, Togetherness for Equality Action Group (TEA group), Thailand further added, “Each country in the ASEAN has laws that discriminate based on sexual orientation and/or gender identity, contrary to their constitutions that guarantee fundamental rights and liberties for all. Meanwhile, state sanctioned violence continues unchecked. In such environments, we face barriers from fully enjoying our fundamental rights, accessing services, and living a fulfilling and meaningful life without fear, shame and guilt.”
“Many LGBTIQ persons are denied our right to health when SOGIE is still pathologized. To date, trangenderism or gender dysphoria is still listed as a form of mental illness in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Homosexuality, on the other hand, was removed from the DSM in 1986, but many continue to believe that it is a mental illness. The assumption that SOGIE is a mental illness leads to attempts to cure us. This violates our fundamental liberties and takes away our personal autonomy. In addition, corrective programmes have been proven ineffective, and actually negatively scar LGBTIQ persons,” explained Yulianus Rettoblaut the Chairperson of Indonesia Transwomen Communication Forum.
With this campaign, ASC aims to create a positive environment where diversity and choice are respected, where people can all co-exist in dignity and humanity. In view of that, we call LGBTIQ persons and allies to post ‘selfies’ or photos of themselves with apps like Instagram, using the hashtag #ASEANtoo to show your support for the inclusion of SOGIE in the ASEAN.
The ASC will also host a series of ‘Queer tweets’ on the 13, 14 and 15th March 2014 with three different topics every day. We shall cover the basics on the first day, the trends and challenges on day two, finally, positive developments in relation to SOGIE in the ASEAN on day three.