Monday, December 2, 2019

NOTABLES at AIM first speaker: Hon. Geraldine Roman

Bataan Representative Hon. Geraldine Roman, The first openly transgender woman elected to the Congress of the Philippines, advocating for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) rights, said she was in favor of gender-neutral bathrooms as a temporary solution as they are more practical during the first NOTABLES at AIM - Equality: Is it achievable.

“If we are willing to fight against discrimination on the basis of these personal circumstances that have nothing to do with one’s capacity to work, why are we not able as a society to fight against discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity and expression? But I have to insist, these circumstances are not chosen and these circumstances are irrelevant especially when looking for a job or qualifying for a post in government. They should not be used as criteria in determining who should receive services from the government or who should be able to enter a public establishment like a hotel or a restaurant. That seeks to protect Filipinos who just happen to be LGBT, from discrimination at the workplace, in schools, in the delivery of government services, as well as access to commercial and public establishments. It also seeks to guarantee that Filipinos who happen to be LGBT will not be insulted in the streets, that they will be ‘outed’ without their consent. They say that the SOGIE bill is same-sex marriage. It is not. In fact, in one of the provisions where there was a reference to professional licenses…we were careful to specify that these do not refer to marriage licenses. There are people who may have different sexual orientations and gender identities and expressions. But these people have to be treated with dignity and respect. And their rights have to be guaranteed under the law.” ~Hon. Geraldine Roman, Bataan Representative

With the event open to controversial figures in order to spur intelligent dialogue on challenging issues, the organizers saw it fitting to invite as their first featured speaker the first openly transgender woman elected to the Congress of the Philippines, Hon. Geraldine Roman, who has snagged headlines for her bold efforts in advocating for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) rights. The Bataan representative’s talk focused on equality and inclusivity in society. 

In her speech, Roman explained how Filipinos are being discriminated especially in the workplace in terms of age, religion, ethnicity, physical appearance, as well as sexual orientation and gender identity and expression or SOGIE. 

The Asian Institute of Management (AIM) Master of Business Management (MBM) Batch 1995 has launched Notables at AIM, a nontraditional speaker series hosted by an array of luminaries with expertise and insight on relevant topics. Thought leaders and captains of industry are invited to engage not only with the AIM community but with the public in attendance as well. 
“It provides a much-needed arena for an informed and purposeful exchange on relevant issues. The third out of the seven fundamental human needs is the need to belong or connection. It comes after subsistence and security, and growth and understanding. Inclusivity addresses and fulfills that need. How do we achieve it? We temper if not altogether do away with discrimination. How do we go about it? We start with intelligent discourse. Inclusivity is a critical yet complicated humanitarian issue. Let’s start engaging with it.” ~Marc Ablaza, MBM ‘95 Batch Representative

AIM MBM Batch ’95 organized Notables at AIM to further the renowned international management school’s advocacy in providing quality education. The batch also hopes to raise funds for scholarships. 

For more information about Notables at AIM, you may visit our social media pages:

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