Southeast Asia's largest Pride parade wrapped up Pride Month in the Philippines on Saturday, with organisers of the Metro Manila Pride March estimating 70,000 people attended - more than three times the number that attended the 2018 Pride event.
Metro Manila Pride came together this year under the #ResistTogether banner, with the event offering educational discussions, performances by local bands and spoken word artists, solidarity speeches and more, in addition to the annual march.
This year's Pride events also provided an avenue for the LGBTQ+ community to express their opinions on other social issues facing the Philippines, including the beginning of the third year of President Duterte's administration, and the controversial influence that both China and the US has in the nation.
Manila's Pride march began in 1994, with less than a hundred attendees. Since then, it has seen exponential growth.
This year, Senator Risa Hontiveros addressed the crowd as a co-author of the SOGIE (Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity and Expression) Equality Bill. While the bill has stalled in the current session of Congress, Senator Hontiveros expressed hope that the 18th Congress could progress the Bill further, with the hope of passing it into law soon. 'Someday, discrimination will fail and Pride will win.'
The Mayor of Marikina City, where Metro Manila Pride is held, also announced that he has signed his cities Anti-Discrimination Ordinance of 2019, as his expression of support for the LBGTQ+ community.
Photo: Lisa Marie David/Rappler
Passing anti-discrimination laws, and ensuring equality for everyone regardless of sexual orientation of gender identification, is integral to closing inequality gaps across the region.
Pride Post No. 1: taking Pride and the battle for sovereignty to the streets of Dumaguete— 🐠🧜🏽♀️🏳️🌈 (@_lucillejean) June 30, 2019
I fight for my rights as part of the LGBTQIA+ community and as a FILIPINO. #ResistTogether 🏳️🌈#DefendPHSovereignty 🇵🇭 pic.twitter.com/UJoE4SOSYb