By Xiaoying, Xie Dec.8 2016
Jean is still currently a college student. However, she has been a famous Chinese LGBT activist for several years. She now works for Rainbow Hotline, which focuses on solving legal issues for Chinese LGBT groups. “One of my biggest dream for me is to see the legal approval of same-sex marriage, I would like to be the first group of lesbian couples to be married in China. We are trying hard. I don’t want to see no progress until I die.” Jean’s dream is the same with many other LGBT people in China. Chinese LGBT groups are longing for the attention for government for more legal and political protection. As Jean told us, although Chinese sexual minorities were largely invisible in the mainstream society, they have much more legal issues as you can imagine. “Protection of them is not only for them, it’s for the society to notice something broader, to care for people that are not similar. Although rainbow hotline has more than 10 volunteers, there are still not enough people. “From fake marriages, child adoption to domestic violence, you name it, sexual minorities have even more legal issues to be solved.” Jean told us so.
Until now, Chinese government keeps an “no support, no objection” policy towards sexual minority group. Governmental organizations largely keep a denial attitude of LGBT people and does not want to admit their large existence in Chinese society. This explains why Chinese LGBT group does not have much legal protection. Even more, non-governmental organization for LGBT groups would have to apply for license through reasons of other such as women’s right protection since there is no NGO license in China for LGBT groups. Therefore, Chinese LGBT LGBT group are getting out currently to fight for more legal attention and care.
Much social progress and notice has been made from legal advocacy in China from law suit of LGBT groups. Famous sociologist, Yinhe Li, has advocated from 2001 to 2015 Chinese same-sex marriage bill to the Chinese National People’s Congress. Although all the proposals have been denied by the Congress, there is much debate in the society about the legality and possibility of same-sex marriage. In April 2016, Mingliang Hu and Wenlin Sun, a couple of same sex, sued the Bureau of Civil Administration(BCA) in Changsha. In Chinese family law, there is no statue that directly address the illegality of same-sex marriage. Nevertheless, the BCA denied the request of Hu and Sun of getting married. Although, as expected, the law suit was denied by the local court, Hu and Sun decided that they would keep appeal all the way to the supreme court to see what the result would be. Also, in 2016, the first lawsuit against transgender work place discrimination was filed in Guiyang. Mr.C faced discrimination from his supervisor to force him (as mentally a male and physically a female) to wear female outfit in the work place. This raised awareness of workplace bully against LGBT group people in China.
Although not much progress in policy has been made until now, but as Jean says “I am positive and I think one day the dream would become reality.”