Now more than ever, there's a vital need for the youth to speak up about the issues and causes that they deeply feel connected to. Whether it's about standing up against government abuses and inadequancies or advocating social causes, the younger generation no longer sits still or leaves it up to the adults to do the fixing. Rather, we start our own movements and make sure that our voices are heard by those who have to.
Such is the case among the impassioned student body of the De La Salle University. Last May 25, the University Student Government (DLSU-USG) spearheaded G For SOGIE, an event where members of the LGBT community as well as youth leaders and various student councils gathered to rally for the Anti-Discrimination Bill also known as the SOGIE (Sexual Orientation And Gender Identity And Expression) Equality Bill.
Calling on Senate President Tito Sotto and Majority Floor Leader Migz Zubiri to end the debates and pass the bill, over 500 students and supporters showed up to make a stance in hopes of changing the national landscape as far as LGBT rights are concerned. According to Vince Liban, head of the University of the Philippines' LGBT organization UP Babaylan, “The delay in the passage of the SOGIE Equality Bill is a denial of human rights.” He cited that the said bill has been sponsored in the Senate in December 2016 but has languished in the plenary for almost one-and-a-half years. “The Senate has 3 remaining session days for the 2nd regular session. The SOGIE Equality Bill has waited long enough,” he urged.
For Mikee de Vega, Chairperson of the DLSU-USG and convener of Catholics for Equality, the youth is as aware and vigilant as they should be, saying that the passage of the SOGIE Equality Bill will be one of their main criteria in choosing Senators for the midterm elections. “We are closely watching the Senate and we hope they deliver,” she concluded.
Youth-initiated events like G For Sogie prove that our generation stands in the front lines when it comes to fighting for the kind of society that we envision–one that is inclusive and progressive. Check out the video below to see what went down when we joined DLSU in their call for a better Philippines for our LGBT family!
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