At the rally, Pink Dot ambassadors led the crowd in making 10 declarations on the changes the LGBTQ community and its allies are ready for, and the things we are ready to do to effect that change; so that each and every member of the LGBTQ community is treated as an equal member of society in Singapore.
Declaration 1: Pat Mok
1. We are ready to stand by our friends and family members who are LGBTQ
– so that none of them will ever feel the need to hide who they are.
Declaration 2: Anita Kapoor
2. We are ready to start difficult conversations
– with people who don’t agree with the values that we stand for
– we need to keep sharing our stories and build better understanding.
Declaration 3: Johnson Ong
3. We are ready for LGBT organisations to be able to register themselves under the Societies Act
– so that we can have proper legal entities to support members of the LGBTQ community
– too many of our community groups have suffered because they are not recognised for the great work that they are doing.
Declaration 4: Ivan Heng
4. We are ready to see more positive portrayals of LGBTQ people in our mainstream media without censorship
– because we are sick and tired of being seen as tragic characters or vilified as perverts.
– we need to the positive role models among us to be seen by the public, to alter misconceptions about the LGBTQ community, to inspire those who have realised that they are different and have no one they can turn to.
Declaration 5: Mark Richmond
5. We are ready for schools to support all our children equally
– with accurate sex education, and to equip teachers to handle bullying in schools
– we want our children to be brought up in healthy, affirming school environments, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
Declaration 6: Tan Kheng Hua
6. We are ready for greater access to healthcare and social services
– we need doctors, nurses, social workers and counselors to be better informed about the needs of LGBTQ individuals
– we need to adopt international guidelines on providing sexual health information, prevention and treatment for LGBTQ persons, especially LGBT youth.
Declaration 7: Brendon Fernandez and Theresa Goh
7. We are ready for businesses that embrace diversity
– so that our LGBTQ friends have an equal footing when they are looking for jobs
– and that they are protected from discrimination at their workplaces
– We thank all the 113 local companies who have come on board to sponsor Pink Dot this year!
Declaration 8: Adrian Pang and Lim Yu Beng
8. We are ready for LGBT Singaporeans to be seen as equal citizens in the eyes of the law
– we need to repeal 377A, a outdated law that criminalises gay men for something so innate to them
– we are all Singaporeans, regardless of race, language, religion, gender identity or sexual orientation
– 377A must not stand in the way of Justice, Equality and Progress – three of the five stars in our national flag that are so lacking for our LGBTQ citizens
Declaration 9: Janice Koh and Neo Swee Lin
9. We are ready to be the change we want to see
– just as Auntie Dolly and her daughter Sam have volunteered for Pink Dot for the past seven years
– just as Thasha’s [Make “Love,Simon” NC16 in Singapore] petition has garnered more than 21,000 signatures and has reached the IMDA
– just as Faiz has come out so courageously to be himself
– we can all do our part to change the hearts and minds of the people around us. If we can commit to stand up to the values that we believe in, engage in meaningful (sometimes difficult) conversations with the people in our lives, change will come.
Declaration 10: Pam Oei
10. We are ready to be heard by forming our 10th Pink Dot!
– by coming tonight, all of you have stood forward to be counted
– it is the 10th time we are doing this. Some of you have been with us from the very first year, some of you have joined us along the way. We recognise that for many of you, it has taken a lot of courage just to even turn up at Pink Dot. Thank you, for taking the step, for standing here with us, year after year.