Screenshot from Mayor Isko Moreno’s Facebook Live.

Manila Mayor Francisco ‘Isko Moreno’ Domagoso signed on Thursday the city’s anti-discrimination ordinance, punishing anyone who discriminates according to a person’s Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Expression (SOGIE).

According to the mayor, Ordinance No. 8695 is a completion of one of his vows that “every Manileno will be treated equally, regardless of gender and status in life.”

“In our small step, maiparamdam man lang namin sa inyo na hindi uubra ang diskriminasyon sa Maynila. Hindi pwedeng umubra ang diskirminasyon dahil sa status sa lipunan – ang mahirap, ang middle class, ang mayaman, ang bakla, tomboy, babae lalaki,” Domagoso said.

“Pare-pareho lang ng karapatan at karampatang paggalang ang dapat maramdaman ng bawat Batang Maynila sa kapwa niya at sa mga taong dumadako sa lungsod ng maynnila in their respective field of undertaking,” he added.

The ordinance prohibits anyone to deny employees access to opportunities for promotion, transfer, training, schooling or any other benefit which are otherwise granted to other employees similarly situated on the basis of actual or perceived SOGIE.

Schools are also not allowed to deny students admission or to expel, dismiss or prevent them from graduating due to their actual or perceived SOGIE.

Also prohibited under the newly-signed ordinance is anyone subjecting persons to physical or verbal harassment, profiling, unjust detention and involuntary confinement because of one’s actual or perceived SOGIE.

The ordinance also required establishments in Manila to create their gender-neutral toilets until 2023. 

Anyone who will violate the ordinance may face the following punishments:

FIRST OFFENSE: A fine of not less than P1,000 or imprisonment of six months or both at the discretion of the court;

SECOND OFFENSE: A fine of not less than P2,000 or imprisonment of six months and one day to eight months or both at the discretion of the court;

THIRD OFFENSE: A fine of not less than P3,000 or imprisonment of eight months and one day to one year or both at the discretion of the court;

Succeeding violators will face a one year imprisonment and fine of not less than P5,000. Local residents can file their complaints to their barangays since they are ordered to create their own LGBTQI Complaint Desks.

“Dito sa Maynila, walang mahirap, walang middle class walang mayaman. Walang bakla, walang tomboy, walang lalake, walang babae. Lahat ay mamamayan ng Lungsod ng Maynila, sa Maynila pantay pantay,” Domagoso said.

The city’s anti-discrimination ordinance is effective immediately. RJ Espartinez