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Readers Experiences

This is what people are saying about life for LGBTI people in HONG KONG...
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Mimi Wong (user currently living in HONG KONG) posted for transgender readers on 06/03/2014 tagged with human rights
Transgender woman refused prostate cancer test at clinic in Central
PUBLISHED : Sunday, 26 January, 2014, 5:33am
UPDATED : Sunday, 26 January, 2014, 5:33am
Lana Lam lana.lam@scmp.com

York Chow Yat-ngok, chairman of the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC)
A transgender woman wants a formal apology from a Central clinic after she was initially refused a prostate cancer screening test because a doctor said a pap smear was her only option, given that her identity card stated she was a woman.

The 59-year-old woman, who underwent sex reassignment surgery in 2010, said the clinic should have been more flexible about her medical needs when she booked the test in November. "I was so angry that I wrote to the Equal Opportunities Commission [EOC] on that same day," Michelle (not her real name) said.

A spokeswoman for the clinic, Dr Vio & Partners, said the general manager was not available for comment yesterday. She said the clinic had verbally apologised to Michelle on November 24 and a prostate cancer test was carried out on December 24.

However, Michelle is seeking a formal apology: "The clinic doesn't think it's necessary, but it's a matter of principle".

The clinic spokeswoman confirmed that the clinic was in discussions with the EOC on how to resolve the matter.

"We regret what happened, but we didn't apologise. The EOC didn't say we had to use the word 'apologise'," she said. "We had no intention to discriminate and it was the doctor's inflexibility as she did not seek advice from higher management."

On the EOC's support of Michelle's complaint of unfair treatment under the Disability Discrimination Ordinance, the clinic spokeswoman said "our higher management disagree" with the finding that being transgender was a disability.

"We are open to discussion, but if someone wants to victimise herself, I don't know," she said.

The EOC defines gender identity disorder as a psychiatric disability which falls under the Disability Discrimination Ordinance.

Michelle's complaint is one of two being handled by the Hong Kong branch of the Association of World Citizens, an NGO with consultative status with the UN's Economic and Social Council.
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Eliana (user currently living in HONG KONG) posted for transgender readers on 03/02/2014 +20
Crossing borders a real life story (Eliana's narration).
read more in her blog www.soyeliana.com

The 16 of September of 2013 my life change dramatically.

Before that day, I was a Colombian master student awarded with a scholarship in the Taipei Medical University, an outstanding person following a dream, living comfortably in peace and happy in the Island of Taiwan.

After that horrible day, I became a refugee of the United Nations, an stateless and homeless person in the middle of a horrible city called Hong Kong, with no Identity, no dignity, no passport and living in very poor conditions, sleeping on the floor in a improvised shelter for me.

What happened that day?.

As I mention before, I was in Taiwan, living and studying, and due to bureaucratic issues related to my passport (my picture) I had to come urgently to the consulate of Colombia in Hong Kong, the closest one, to issue a new passport to renew my Taiwanese Visa and also apply for the second year of my master in Taipei Medical University.

I came for only 3 days but that day the length of my stay became suddenly in a indefinite stay.

That day I was sexually abused, and I experienced a grave violation of my human rights in the International Airport of Hong Kong.

There due to the ambiguity with my gender, the customs and excise and immigration officer decide to refuse my enter to Hong Kong SAR, finding the way to deport me to my home country, a place that I left before, because I suffered two murder attempts, precisely for the same reason the ambiguity with my gender.

After the refusal to enter to HK I was forced to be naked, and two male officers who mocked of me, touched and manipulate all the parts in my body, freely and with no regret, took advantage of the fact that because in my passport was written an M in my gender instead of an F, and they were complete legally able to do what ever they want to me, including touching sensible parts of my body, like my boobs that according to them are not that sensible if you have an M in your passport.

I was sexually assaulted, but for Hong Kong, according with their legal definition of sexual abuse, sexual abuse or sexual assault is only considered when it happens (man person to a female person). So according with that, we all transgender woman, can be raped and sexually abused without any legal implication for the person who commit that crime, like the sexual offense of those two officers commit to me at the Hong Kong International Airport (The busiest airport in the world).

After almost one day detained in the airport’s jail in horrible conditions, in where I was exposed to all the man that were in that detention room being forced to use the man’s toilet in front of them, instead of the female one I wanted to go and share same seats even when I was dressing a skirt.

The officer who were quite discriminative, violated each of the steps that they should follow with a person that is in detention like me, and they refuse to contact my consulate in Colombia. Instead they were trying to deport me as quick as they can after they realized the big mistake they commit with me after the sexual abuse and the human right violation the just commit.

After hours crying, and asking for help, I found the way to turn on my phone using the international roaming and I sent a help message to all my Facebook friends after that The Amnesty International and several organizations came to release from that place.

After that I started a very painful and long journey in this city that I don’t like too much.

My fears of being deported to a place in where I can not be myself, in where I can not consider to have family and where expose my self as I am could lead me to the death. Forced me to find a long-term solution in the highest representation of the nations in the world. the UN.

I became an Asylum seeker and in less than a month I got the Refugee Status of the UN.

I became an stateless person, holding the Recognition of the United Nations.

That day I lose many things, my life, my past, my master degree, my nationality, my passport, my identity, and my medical and hormonal treatment in Taiwan, since that I was not able to return to Taiwan, because I was a UN Citizen and Taiwan is a country not recognized for the UN.

who I am.

I am Eliana (Sasha), born in Bogota – Colombia. I’m a Dr in Pharmacy and Chemist.

I was born in Bogota my mom ran away from the soviet union in the 70′s she is half Jewish – Russian and my father is Colombian.

I am a Transgender Woman.

I left Colombia a very transphobic place to start a life in Taiwan in the way I always wanted, leaving back my whole life, and starting from zero.

Since 6 years old I realized that my physical gender was not matching with my inner feeling, and I had to grow in the wrong way being a person I was not.

I used to wear my mom’s make up and outfits since 9.

In my adolescence the awful changes related to my puberty lead to try to commit suicide in several occasions.

However at 17 years old I understood who I was, a transgender woman, and I realized that is possible to be who you are, but is a quite complicated way full of barriers, solitude and isolation.

After that I tried to be my self in my room several times, but was in my 20′s that I had the courage to go out in the streets cross dressing as Eliana, knowing the hazards and treats that people like me will find in a transphobic place like Bogota.

Colombia is a country where Machismo, Transphobia and Homophobia, are deeply integrated to the society, a 60 years war, and the crime and ultra-right paramilitary groups making social cleaning in the streets make colombia to holds one of the highest murder rate of transgender woman in the world.

Precisely in 2009 I almost die in the attempt of being my self, only the third time I went out to the street as Eliana exposing my self less that 5 minutes, I was stabbed in my back (4 inches scar) and I was about to be shot in hand of the social cleaning patrols.

After these terrifying episodes that nobody of my family and friends knew, I understood, the dramatic rejection and transphobia in the society, and my family a complex mixture between Colombian and Soviet backgrounds that make them quite afraid and phobic of the human spectrum of sexual orientation and and gender identity lead me to leave everything back and escape from all, because If I want to be my self I needed to leave my country, my family, my friends, my past.

At that time I was able to speak 5 languages and I had two degrees, I knew that things could be easier in some way for me in the future, I was wrong.


Taiwan was my chrysalide, there the gender identity is seen as part of the nature of the human soul as Budha said your body is only a crust the real you is within you, a vision that the conservative Hong Kong nowadays don’t understand.

So there I found a safe place to be myself, and start my medical treatment and my transitioning while I was studying my master degree in medical sciences.

My life in general was quite nice, and I was in peace, and happy to be my self, I had to work as a part of sustaining my Hormonal Treatment selling food in the streets of Taipei, selling cakes, lunch boxes and cupcakes, an activity that I did part time with my university activities.

In Taiwan I found a lot of answers in Buddhism and I became my self a most spiritual person, and the awareness of the human nature and the diversity and dynamicity of the universe increased in me.

However things starting to change progressively, my face and my body change abruptly, I became evidentially in a woman, so one year after when I had to renew my visa for my second year of scholarship, the Immigration officers said that my passport was not reflecting my identity and I need to contact the closest embassy of my country to solve that problem I needed to change the picture and also the M to an F.

My embassy never helped me, and after several attempts the only way to solve my problem was going to the closet consulate to Taiwan. Hong Kong.

After the Airport.

Rainbow of Hong Kong an NGO in charge of LGBT advocacy and issues in Hong Kong decided to hold my case and give me support in different ways.

Part of the help they are providing to me is the temporary shelter in their offices in Jordan, place in where I’m living now.

In Taiwan I was holding a complicated medical treatment including a medication “Leuprolide Acetate” that can not be suddenly suspended because it can produce several adverse effects related to a general metabolic disorder.

Unfortunately I couldn’t continue my medical treatment in Hong Kong, and the Hospital and the general health system, refuse to provide me any medical assistance.

Two weeks after I fainted in the street and an ambulance took to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, when they realized about my gender ambiguity, they immediately locate me into the padded room for insane and mental patients in the psychiatric hospital, in restrains to a bed, instead of providing medical assistance due to the reason I fainted, I was in restraints 30th of September and 1st of October, then Rainbow of Hong Kong save me again.

The fight after that episode against the Hong Kong public health system was that strong that Rainbow of Hong Kong, finally got full assistance to my medication, and since January my whole treatment have been covered for the Health System of Hong Kong.

The UN acknowledge to me the Refugee Status, with this status, I can be officially protected for the UN toward any hostility of any government like the Hong Kong one.

After having this recognition the UN started a troublesome process to find and third country for me to go to, even though they have more that 20 countries for resettlement, most of them like Norway, Belgium, Canada, France or Italy, force me to do the sterilization surgery or mutilation, to recognize my gender as female in my documentation, on the other hand a lot of countries do not provide any transgender assistance or health care like the United States health system, so the UN has been struggling in the way to find a good solution for me.

After 15 of December things with immigration department started to be complicated again, I was afraid to approach them for the previous experience, the 6 of January I went there after having a recommendation letter from the UN, however after that even with the refugee certificate I became an illegal person, and I was liable to be detained according with the Hong Kong law (see section 32), because of the overstaying I was arrested by the end of January and on 4th of February the Immigration Office will decide whether they send my case to the court or not, it means I can be in detention, in jail or in the worst case being deported to Colombia, a place in where my life will be in danger.

My Blog for more information: www.soyeliana.com

Local and world news about my case:



http://www.gaystarnews.com/article/trans-woman-claims-hong-kong-customs-behaved-animals031113 ;




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Protecting Transgender Rights in Hong Kong: Equal Marriage Rights

This morning Hong Kong took a giant leap forward in protecting transgender rights in a judgment of the Court of Final Appeal which will allow a trans* woman to marry her partner. In a judgment that some Irish politicians could do well to take note of the Court concluded that in multicultural jurisdiction such as Hong Kong, the nature of marriage as a social institution had undergone many alterations in that the importance of procreation as an essential constituent “has much diminished”. In a 4-1 running, the Court held that it is “contrary to principle to focus merely on biological features fixed at the time of birth and regarded as immutable” and held in favour of the Appellant.

Full Article: http://humanrights.ie/gender-sexuality-and-the-law/protecting-transgender-rights-in-hong-kong-equal-marriage-rights/
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