Transgendered In Southeast Asia
This story comes out of Cambodia from the Phnom Phen Post:
"She waited patiently at the office of the Women’s Network for Unity because she had a message she wanted to deliver to Cambodia through the media. “Stop discriminating against transgendered people because this discrimination forces us into sex work to survive,” Touch Srey Leak said, explaining that it was impossible for her to get a job in the formal sector. She also said she wanted to “suggest to local authorities and police that they stop raiding and arresting sex workers, because they do this work because they have no choice”.
She said this quietly and without anger – as though she believed that if people understood her dilemma they would change their attitude towards her. She also asked whether the interview would be translated into Khmer because this was the audience she wanted to reach.
“Because you discriminate against me as a transgendered person I am forced to do sex work, and then you discriminate against me again for doing this work,” the 24-year-old from a village in Kandal province reiterated in her quiet logic.
Like most transgendered Khmers, Touch dislikes the Thai word “Kathoey”, which is often translated as “ladyboy” in English, but is used pejoratively here, even though some scholars say this is the culture the term originated in. Women born as men here prefer to be called Srey Sroh, which means “Beautiful Girl”: a phrase that fits Touch to a T."
Follow the link above for more! In many countries around the world, the person and nation change but the sad story is still the same.
|TranssexualTV star Poppy receives the award for Most Attractive Star at the Star Kingdom Awards earlier this year. Photograph: Pha Lina|