TGNC development in the University of the Philippines (UP).
UP eyes to formalize transgender-affirmative moves starting immediately, following the release of a memorandum from Ma. Theresa T. Payonggayong, vice chancellor for academic affairs, that reminded all deans, directors and heads of academic units of UP’s Anti-Sexual Harassment Code that states that “the university values and upholds the dignity of every individual, and guarantees the full respect for human rights of all members of the UP community.”
This memo actually backs the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies’ Guidelines on Affirming Transgender and Gender Non-conforming (TGNC) Student’s Names, Pronouns and Titles. This, in turn, elaborates Section 1 of the aforementioned UP Anti-Sexual Harassment Code.
The same memo stated that UP eyes to “maintain an enabling, gender-fair, safe and healthy learning and working environment for the members of the UP community.”
With this memo, there is now recommendation to have a transgender-affirmative academic information system that will recognize usernames and email addresses of both faculty and students based on their lived names, and to enact a system-wide university anti-discrimination code.
This is actually big step for UP.
In February 2011, a transgender student – Hender Gercio – was addressed by her French teacher using male pronouns. At that time, the professor expressed discomfort in referring to Gercio using feminine pronouns in class because of her so-called “Christian faith”. Though Gercio brought the case to the UP President, no immediate step was taken to develop a system-wide policy protecting LGBTQIA students, teachers and staff from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI).