[From the web] Before ‘same-sex unions,’ let’s talk about the Anti-Discrimination Bill first -CNN Philippines

On May 17, Taiwan became the first country in Asia to pass marriage equality into law. A few days later, Congress released an online poll on its website asking citizens whether they are in favor of legalizing “same-sex unions as civil partnerships” in the Philippines. Suddenly, social media was abuzz with varying opinions on the poll.

Conservatives expressed their staunch disapproval, pushing the poll’s results to lean heavily towards “no.” Meanwhile, within the LGBTQ+ community, there was no general consensus on the poll. Some were angered by the phrasing of the options (Why was “personal opinions” an acceptable basis for answering “no”?). Others were wary of the use of “unions” rather than “marriage.” There were also those who, though dismayed by the results but hopeful for change, clamored for more LGBTQ+ members and allies to vote.

But how much do these online polls affect public policy anyway? And how crucial is it for the local LGBTQ+ community to bring it into the spotlight?

According to Jeff Crisostomo, communications officer of outgoing Representative and Governor-Elect Kaka Bag-ao of Dinagat Islands, the online poll has “very little to no” bearing on policy. Gov. Kaka Bag-ao is the principal author of the Anti-Discrimination Bill (ADB), also known as the SOGIE Equality Bill.

Read more @cnnphilippines.com

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