‘LGBT desks’ launched at police stations in the Philippines to tackle hate crime

Local governments in the Philippines have started introducing ‘LGBT desks’ at police stations, in a bid to tackle hate crimes.

The Quezon City Council has passed a resolution supporting House Bill 2952 which seeks to establish ‘LGBT Help and Protection Desks’ in police stations all across the nation.

The desks are designed to handle all cases relating to hate crimes or harassment of LGBT people to better tackle the problems facing the Filipino LGBT community reports the Politko Metro Manila.

Two men kiss during a Rite of Holy Union ceremony for the Lesbians Gays Bisexual and Transgenders (LGBT) community in Manila on June 28, 2015. (NOEL CELIS/AFP/Getty)

The resolution, written by City Councilor Lena Marie Juico, states that “LGBT members are becoming targets of discrimination and violence which affect their economic, social, and physiological well-being.”

It adds: “In spite of this reality, there is an absence of government mechanism or intervention directed to monitor, let alone address, the incidents of discrimination and even violence against the Filipino LGBT community.”

The country’s national police force is also legally required to ensure the gender neutrality of its operations from the recruitment and selection to the promotion and deployment of police officers.

Through the legislation, local government officials hope to create a police force which investigates and tackles offences against LGBT people in a keen way.

Earlier this month, a Catholic university in the country came under fire after its new code of conduct explicitly proscribed LGBT relationships.

Under the contract at the University of Santo Tomas, “cohabiting without the benefit of marriage, or engaging in relationship contrary to the principles adhered to by the University and the teachings of the Catholic Church” were banned. Those breaking the rules faced expulsion from the 400-year-old university.