ISLAMABAD: Forum for Dignity (FDI) here on Thursday launched a report entitled “Recognition to Rights: Reflecting the Legislative Process for Transgender Rights in Pakistan” in which it demanded special measures to resolve the financial, social and health issues of old transgenders helping them lead their lives with dignity.
The speakers on the occasion said transgenders belonging to religious minorities suffered a great deal of harassment, discrimination and violence while the old ones were more vulnerable who did not have financial, social and health assistance.
The report highlighted the social stigma attached to transgender identity that limited their mobility and access to education, besides the dynamics within their community which also impeded their access to educational opportunities.
Khadija Ali, a lawyer, speaking on the occasion, said the year 2017 was an important year for transgender movement in Pakistan as there was increased recognition of their rights, however, the situation of violence, discrimination, and social stigmas remained unchanged.
The report said the community faced the worst form of discrimination and violence from the public officials, especially law enforcement agencies.
It said that according to primary data collected for the research, the situation of transgender community is not better than before. “The community constantly suffers from rampant discrimination from family, community, society, and the state. They face an extreme form of violence and assault,” it added.
The report suggested building greater synergies amongst the transgender community for better lobbying and advocacy, developing and strengthening partnerships, harnessing technical, legal and medical expertise for transgender activities all over the country, evidence-based research, capacity building of transgender groups and an inclusive trans-movement in the country focusing more on the vulnerable groups.
National Commission on the Status of Women Member Shafiq Chaudhry on the occasion stressed for special measures to discourage segregation and to ensure inclusive society. He expressed the expectation that the legislation on the transgender community that had been passed by the Senate would also be adopted by the National Assembly.
FDI Board of Directors President and a transwoman Maya Zaman said that all segments of the society should come forward and support transgender community in their movement for rights and recognition.