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Phuket: Pub row sparks equality call

A transgender woman who says she was refused access to a pub has filed a petition with the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) demanding better treatment.

sextechnology
By Bangkok Post

Tuesday 10 February 2015, 09:41AM


Transgender model Nijshanaaj Sudlarphaar or 'Sarina Thai', cries as she submits a petition with the National Human Rights Commission yesterday to demand gender equality after being turned away from a bar at RCA last month. Photo/Apichit Jinakul

Transgender model Nijshanaaj Sudlarphaar or 'Sarina Thai', cries as she submits a petition with the National Human Rights Commission yesterday to demand gender equality after being turned away from a bar at RCA last month. Photo/Apichit Jinakul

Model Nijshanaaj Sudlarphaar or "Sarina Thai", said she was refused entry to Onyx, an RCA nightclub in Bang Kapi district, early last month.

She said she and four foreign friends went to the pub on New Year's Day and were asked for identification by a pub bouncer. ''After discovering I am a kathoey, he said I could could not go inside because I was a 'transwoman'," Ms Nijshanaaj said.

She said she felt stripped of her dignity, and was deeply upset and embarrassed. Her petition seeks equal rights for transgenders.

Ms Nijshanaaj was backed by Ronnapoom Samakkeekarom, head of the Thai Transgender Alliance, who said her case showed discrimination against transgenders was still a problem which Thais must confront.

Barring her access because of her gender also was contrary to the interim charter, Mr Ronnapoom said.

Nightclubs often bar transgenders, citing problems such as theft or prostitution as excuses, he said.

"You should not tarnish all transgender people with the same brush," he said.

He hoped attitudes will change once the gender equality bill, recently passed by the National Legislative Assembly, takes effect.

Amara Pongsapich, the NHRC chief, said the petition will be considered while the proprietor of the nightclub will be invited to present his version of events.

The manager of Onyx, who asked not to be named, denied the accusations.

The bar does not discriminate against transgenders, he told the Bangkok Post yesterday (February 9), adding he was unaware Ms Nijshanaaj was turned away.

Read original story here.

 

 

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