To raise awareness on the issue of human trafficking and call for justice for Mary Jane Veloso, Migrante LGBT, an arm of migrant advocacy group Migrante International, held a beauty pageant. Called “Miss Gay 2015 Kontra Human Trafficking”, it was participated by community members of Brgy. Bagong Silang in Caloocan City.
“Ang mga kabataang kabaklaan na dapat aware sila at alam nila ang mga karapatan nila para sa pakikipaglaban sa human trafficking. Ang mga nakasaksi nito ay ang mga masa sa aming komunidad, ang mga kabataan at ang iba pang sektor na aming naimbitahan (Gay youths should be aware of their rights in fighting human trafficking. Community people, youth, and other invited sectors were able to witness it),” said George Jagonoy, secretary general of Migrante LGBT.
The beauty pageant’s highlight was the continuing call for the fair trial on the case of Mary Jane Veloso and her release and return to the Philippines. Migrante LGBT believes that Veloso is innocent given the testimonies from illegal recruiter, Kristine Sergio.
“Kaya kami naglunsad ng Miss Gay 2015 Kontra Human Trafficking para na rin na ipaalam sa ating gobyerno at lipunang ito at higit sa lahat ang mga masa, na kaming mga kabaklaan, ay hindi lamang na baklang panlandi sa gabi, baklang rumarampa sa gabi. Baklang may katungkulan at karapatan na ipagtanggol ang aming kasarian at laban na rin sa diskriminasyon. Tinututulan din namin ang human trafficking na nagdudulot ng kapahamakan at pagsasamantala sa ating kapwa (We held Miss Gay 2015 Against Human Trafficking to inform government, the public, and most especially basic sectors of society, that we gays are not only gays who go cruising for sex in the night. We are gays that have rights and responsibilities in defending our gender and in fighting discrimination. We are against human trafficking that has done harm and exploited people),” said Jagonoy.
Migrante LGBT celebrates their participation in the collective action of different organization locally and abroad in rallying support for stopping the execution of Veloso.
“Noong pinanawagan na si Mary Jane Veloso ay mabibitay, ang Migrante International at Migrante LGBT ay kumilos at nagvigil sa Indonesian embassy. Ito ay upang manawagan para sa pagtigil ng pagbibitay kay Mary Jane. Nagtagumpay naman ang gawain namin na iyon. Nilahukan yun ng iba’t-ibang sektor din(When it was announced that Mary Jane Veloso was to be executed, Migrante International and Migrante LGBT mobilized and held a vigil at the Indonesian Embassy. This was to call for the stop of the execution of Mary Jane. It was successful and many different sectors participated),” Jagonoy ended.