Who are we?
Our History.In September 1993, ProGay Philippines was born when several progressive gay student activists gathered as a study group that tried to develop a concept of gay Filipinosí roles in the movement for national and social liberation.
ProGay started in several Manila schools and built contacts in other parts of the country. Progay led the first Gay March in Asia on June 26, 1994, timed with the 25th Stonewall anniversary, to highlight the larger social issues.
In August 1994, ProGay Philippines hit the Catholic hierarchy and the Ramos government for their respective inept positions on gender, population and development during the United Nations' Conference on Population and Development.
In January 1997, ProGay joined the broader people's protest against the national ID system, It also led the criticism of the military ban on gays and filed a discrimination suit against a bar which refused entry to a cross-dressing gay patron.
Gay menís understanding of their role in our society. Gays in the Philippine society suffer the same poverty and exploitation like other sectors of society. This prevents the full human potentials of the Filipino gays. Individual gays are generally refused recruitment and reemployment, promotions, pay raises and benefits; or are given unattractive assignments.
Men who are perceived to be homosexual may be treated as outcasts from certain official social functions. As a community, gays are parts of families torn apart by an unfair global economy. Joblessness and landlessness force their families to leave for the cities and other countries, and they find low-paying menial jobs if available.
Gay liberation: Our Perspective. ProGay-Philippines believes that gay liberation involves not just gay men but also all other people of different sexual orientations. Like other oppressed and exploited people, we struggle for social equality.
We define the struggle for gay liberation as a part of the struggle of the Filipino people for national freedom, and at the same time, this has a distinct concern for the concrete demands of Filipino gay men.
What are our specific needs and concerns? We advocate the full recognition of economic, social and political rights of all sexual minorities to freedom from all forms of sexual discrimination in family, the community, the government, church and mass media.
We therefore believe that gays, as a special interest group, have the responsibility to work for the realization of these goals.
What we can do? ProGay Philippines believes in arousing, organizing and mobilizing gay men in their broadest numbers in localites where they converge in significant numbers. ProGay Philippines will lead concerted mass actions that are gay-related and will work with national movements for broader issues.
ProGay Philippines will conduct campaigns among different groups to educate them and get their support for gay issues.
ProGay Philippines will actively relate with peoples' mass organizations in heightening awareness of gay concerns.
ProGay Philippines wants to strengthen linkages with local gay groups and international solidarity with gay movements, feminists and other gay-friendly groups and individuals via exchanges, visits, communications and conferences.
ProGay Philippines can provide venues for counseling services, legal services in cases of workplace discrimination and worthwhile social activities.
Who can join Pro-Gay? Many people know gays as parlor workers or entertainers. But we are everywhere. We are also found in offices and factories, schools, hospitals, and service-oriented establishments. We are laborers and professionals, students and overseas contract workers, businessmen and church leaders. And we need to get organized.
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