The CBCP has sought to weaken anti-discrimination legislation pending before Congress, for example, and has opposed implementation of comprehensive sexuality education in schools.Representatives of the Church warn that recognizing LGBT rights will open the door to same-sex marriage, and oppose legislation that might promote divorce, euthanasia, abortion, total population control, and homosexual marriage, which they group under the acronym “DEATH.” In a country that is more than 80 percent Catholic, opposition from the Church influences how LGBT issues are addressed in families and schools, with many parents and teachers telling students that being LGBT is immoral or wrong.These policies are particularly difficult for transgender students, who are typically treated as their sex assigned at birth rather than their gender identity.
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In 2012, the Department of Education (Dep Ed), which oversees primary and secondary schools, enacted a Child Protection Policy designed to address bullying and discrimination in schools, including on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
The following year, Congress passed the Anti-Bullying Law of 2013, with implementing rules and regulations that enumerate sexual orientation and gender identity as prohibited grounds for bullying and harassment.
The incidents described in this report illustrate the vital importance of expanding and enforcing protections for LGBT youth in schools.
Despite prohibitions on bullying, for example, students across the Philippines described patterns of bullying and mistreatment that went unchecked by school staff.
Efforts to address discrimination against LGBT people have met with resistance, including by religious leaders.