PRIDE COMES TO ZAMBOANGA.
The city of Zamboanga held its first Pride march, with the local LGBT community trooping as part of the city’s “Pink Parade”, a breast awareness campaign for the Breast Awareness Month.
According to Alvin Toni Gee Fernandez, who helms Mujer-LGBT Organization, joining the Pink Parade was a no-brainer considering the “link of women’s struggle with LGBT struggle”. The LGBT contingent, nonetheless, “aimed to inform Zamboangueños about the existence of the LGBT community in the city,” she said. “Hopefully, this Pride in (the so-called) ‘Asia’s Latin City’… served as an eye opener to people from different walks of life that the LGBT community is in need of help particularly when dealing with lessening the stigma of discrimination, violence and displacement.”
As the first Pride march in Zamboanga, this was joined by – aside from Mujer-LGBT Organization – local LGBT organizations including local clans ZPRS Clan and G4A; Starcats, Labuan LGBT and Tumaga LGBT. The rainbow group in the “Pink Parade” was backed by Zamboanga City’s mayor Beng Climaco.
Taking this a an initial step to “making our presence felt,” said Fernandez, the local LGBT community is also already eyeing to “elevate the usapin (discourses) by lobbying for an anti-discrimination ordinance, and more immediately, documenting violence and SOGIE-based discrimination in the entire city of Zamboanga.”
ALL PHOTOS COURTESY OF HERSHEY WENCISLAO