Manila: The Philippine National Police (PNP) has thrown its support behind a House measure seeking the creation of a special desk in all police stations across the country so as to tackle crimes against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people.
The desk is to administer and attend to cases involving crimes against sexual harassment, hate crimes and other forms of abuses committed against the LGBT community, reports tempo.com.ph.
“We are supportive of that measure. They are inviting us to be one of the resource persons and our inputs have been asked. Now, we are still on the process of studying the bill by provisions,”
Police Senior Superintendent Juanita S. Nebran, chief of the PNP Women and Children Protection Center, told tempo.com.ph adding that the Philippine National Police supports House Bill 2571, which was filed by House Representative Sol Aragones.
“We also want to know to what extent the concerned government agencies should be involved,” Nebran said. “There can be no true and meaningful democracy if we continue to systematically oppress the LGBT sector,” she said in pushing for the passage of her bill.
HB 2571 seeks to be in line with the Republic Act 8551, also known as the Philippine National Police Reform and Reorganization Act of 1998 that mandates the creation of Women’s Desks in all police stations to ensure that the crimes and abuses committed against women and their children are duly addressed.
Aragones said the initiative was required because there existed a “very real and pressing problem” in the number of cases of violations committed against the LGBT community. Even the United Nations has expressed concern about the various human rights violations against LGBT in the Philippines.
The move by both the Philippine National Police and the legislator is significant because the Philippines is a Catholic country with over 80 percent of its 97 million people belonging to that religion and where the Catholic Church has been active in opposing any civil rights legislation for the LGBT community.