Equality Champs named on human rights day
On Human Rights Day, a week before the formal ceremony, TLF Share announced the final selection for the 2021 Equality Champs Awards. In a post on its Facebook page on Friday, December 10, the 2021 Equality Champ awardees consist of five individuals and one organization in governance and public service, education, arts, culture and entertainment, and the special category.
Three individual awardees under governance and public service is led by Vice President Leni Robredo. Other recipients include Cebu City council Alvin Dizon and Batangas Province board member Claudette Ambida. Another individual was chosen for the education category: Professor J. Neil Garcia of the University of the Philippines, who also serves as director of the UP Press.
For arts, culture and entertainment, the Equality Champ will be awarded to the Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA). Its current season features "Under My Skin," a digital staging aimed to promote HIV and AIDS awareness.
The late Chito Gascon, who served as the seventh chair of the Commission on Human Rights, will be honored with a posthumous Special Equality Champ Award. Gascon held the distinction of being the youngest member of the 1986 Constitutional Commission.
According to Ferdi Buenviaje, TLF Share's president and acting executive director, "The 2021 awardees have demonstrated unwavering commitment to equality and human rights for LGBTQIA+ through their bodies of work in their respective fields."
A total of 19 nominations were received for this year, the first time that the search opened five categories: arts, culture and entertainment, governance and public service, media, education, special award. Twelve nominees qualified and were deliberated by the Selection Committee.
Members of the selection committee were announced in social media: Senator Risa Hontiveros, 2019 Equality Champ and chair of the committee; Perci Cendana, former commissioner of the National Youth Commission; Attorney Clare de Leon; Maria Eda Catabas; and Anastacio Marasigan Jr., former executive director of TLF Share.
The formal awarding ceremony will air live on Equality Champ's Facebook page on December 17. The awardees shall receive a trophy designed by prominent Filipino contemporary visual artist Leeroy New, who was a 2012 recipient of the 13 Artists Award of the Cultural Center of the Philippines.