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SOGIE bill author asks LGBT to come out of closet — in violation of her own bill

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Bagong Henerasyon partylist Rep. Bernadette Herrera-Dy issued a press statement last week urging lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender Filipinos to come out of the closet and be registered in proposed surveys or census of the LGBT.

Her press release even had the title: “LADLAD NA BES: HOUSE PUBLIC INFO CHAIR URGES LGBT PINOYS TO STEP FORWARD, COME OUT, AND BE COUNTED”

“When the SOGIE Bill becomes law—in a matter of weeks or a few months—it will then be the opportune time for the census, surveys, and studies to be done,” she said, referring to the proposed Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity or Expression (SOGIE) Equality Act or House Bill 4982.

“It will soon be time for every LGBT in the country to step forward, come out, and be counted,” Herrera-Dy said.

But the congresswoman, a principal author of the SOGIE bill, which the House passed on third reading last Wednesday, may not be aware that she will be in violation of the proposed law, if she forces all LGBT members to be registered.

The SOGIE bill explicitly states that no one is allowed to “out” LGBT without their consent.

One of the offenses listed in the bill is “publishing information intended to ‘out’ or reveal the sex, sexual orientation, or gender identity of the persons without their consent, when such has not been made known by the person concerned, and has been made with malicious intent or is primarily motivated by a desire for commercial profit.”

Herrera-Dy is based in Quezon City, which has already begun a much-criticized policy to register LGBT among City Hall workers.