There is an attempt to block the passage of Senate Bill No. 160 – or the SOGIESC Equality Act, the latest version of the anti-discrimination bill that eyes to protect the human rights of all Filipinos irrespective of their SOGIESC – after its submission to the committee on women, children, family relations, and gender equality last December 6, 2022.
The anti-LGBTQIA effort was particularly credited to conservative politician, Senator Joel Villanueva who – when he was seeking public office in 2016 – actually portrayed himself as an LGBTQIA ally.
But when Villanueva was already a senator, he actually started stalling the anti-discrimination bill. In 2018, he was scheduled to interpellate Sen. Risa Hontiveros, the bill’s sponsor, but then made a switch with Sen. Sherwin gatchalian, who then left the session hall to stall the process. For as long as there are senators still wanting to interpellate, any bill can’t progress to the next steps, so that this is effectively a delaying tactic.
In a Facebook post, LGBTQIA organization TLF Share stated that “23 years of waiting is enough. Pass the SOGIESC Equality Act now!”
LGBTQIA celebrity Ice Seguerra similarly tackled this issue via an Instagram post.
“There are attempts to delay, ONCE AGAIN, the SOGIE Equality Bill from being deliberated in the Senate Plenary. Mga bakla, all eyes on the Senate… hanggang mapasa ang batas,” Seguerra said.