Monday, January 19, 2009

Trans issues to be included in women's month celebrations

Last August, the Rainbow Rights Project, Inc. (R-Rights, Inc.), a legal and policy think tank composed of lesbian and gay lawyers, in cooperation with Ang Ladlad, our LGBT partylist, sponsored a forum on transgender issues and its legal dimensions. It was held at the College of Social Work and Community Development (CSWCD) in the University of the Philippines (UP). Entitled Women nonetheless: Being a trans female in the Philippines, the forum was attended by, among others, students from the UP College of Law.

I was invited to be one of the speakers in that forum along with Sass Sasot, co-founder of the Society of Transsexual Women of the Philippines (STRAP), and Atty. Germaine Leonin, the founding president of R-Rights, Inc.

Imagine my glee when this Saturday, while I was conducting a tutorial study session with a graduate class of the UP Open University, I got a text message from the current chair of R-Rights, Inc., Atty. Angie Umbac, telling me that those same students from the UP College of Law want to hold a similar forum as part of their Women's Month celebration in March. I nearly jumped out of my seat in joy.

You see it has been my wish for some time now to organize Women's Month activities that were trans-specific and this is really a realization of that. I'm hoping that in the next two months as we prepare for this forum we can get more people on board. Of course, as it were I am happy about the forum already but I hope that it can be more than just a forum and become bigger than how it was originally planned. Perhaps, we can have a film festival as well featuring trans movies. Or maybe we can hold a concert for trans equality. The possibilities are endless but we shall see. For now I am happy that finally trans issues are increasingly being seen as women's issues as well and that although we can agree that non-trans women will always be different from trans ones and vice versa, we are really more alike than we would like to acknowledge.


Monica Roberts said...

Good luck with that. I'm happy to hear that things continue to move in a positive direction for transpinays.

You're also correct in pointing out that transwomen and non transwomen have far more in common than not.

I get that point reinforced every time I pick up the phone and talk to my biowomen friends.

a lass called sass said...

congratulations! :-)