Today, we work; no reason to celebrate
TLF Share's Statement on the Fourth State of the Nation Address
Today, the 18th Congress will formally open, and the President will deliver his fourth State of the Nation Address. The Chief Executive is expected to enumerate this administration’s accomplishments to date in his Address. TLF Share and the rest of civil society will be listening closely. We will validate these claims with the realities being faced by our client communities.
In the 17th Congress, the Government was able to enact some landmark policies that protect, promote, fulfill and uphold the dignity and being of citizens. We have our Equality Champion legislators - namely former Representative Arlene “Kaka” Bag-ao and Senator Risa Hontiveros - to thank as they pushed for these progressive measures:
Republic Act (R.A.) No. 11166, “Philippine HIV and AIDS Policy Act”
R.A. No. 11313, “Safe Streets and Public Spaces Act” (or “Bawal Bastos Law”)
R.A. No. 11210, “105-Day Expanded Maternity Leave Law”
The efficient implementation of these laws promises positive impact to the lives of many, but more policies are needed for the hard to reach and marginalized. SOGIE Equality has languished in Congress for so long. In the 17th Congress, the Lower House succeeded, but in the Senate, it suffered the longest period of interpellations. SOGIE Equality benefits not just the LGBT community; it also benefits those who mean the most for many LGBTs -- their parents, siblings, friends, allies. It is the State’s duty to ensure no person lives in fear, stigma and discrimination, that all rights holders are recognized and protected.
TLF Share renews its promise to unceasingly rally for the good cause, for the genuine development of children, women, the elderly, and the LGBT community. We shall remain vigilant over attempts at instituting punitive justice policies, contrary to human development, without regard to human dignity - lowering of minimum age of criminal responsibility, mandatory ROTC, revival of death penalty, among others.
We regret that we cannot accept invitations to heap accolades or to join celebrations over the claimed accomplishments. Today is Monday, the start of another work week, just one of TLF Share's many more weeks ahead promoting and defending sexuality, health and rights.
(Originally posted on TLF Share Facebook page, July 22, 2019. Photo Credit: With stock image and processing from PlaceIt.net)