Measuring Homophobia in the Philippines

Tuesday, July 15, 2014: 8:45 AM
Room: Harbor Lounge A
Oral Presentation
Ma. Leah Czarina ALDAVE , Social Weather Stations, Quezon City, Philippines
Vladymir Joseph LICUDINE , Social Weather Stations, Quezon City, Philippines
In June 2013, local media reported a survey done by US-based Pew Research Center that ranks the Philippines among the most gay-friendly in the world.  In the report entitled “The Global Divide on Homosexuality”, only 17 countries had majorities that agreed with the statement that homosexuality should be accepted by the society, with the Philippines ranking 10th among the 17 countries.

Filipino gay rights groups, however, were not impressed with the survey, which they believe are based on the perception of accepted stereotypes of gays. They mentioned that once a gay is outside of the accepted stereotypes, that is where they encounter rejection.

In June 2013, Social Weather Stations (SWS), a non-stock, non-profit research institution, developed questions in order to look deeper at how to measure homophobia in the Philippines.  This survey was conducted among Filipino adults 18 years old and above.  It found that Filipinos believe that: a) gays and lesbians have the right to be protected against any form of discrimination, b) they contributed a lot in the progress of the society, and c) being gay and lesbian is not a form of mental illness.  But the most notable finding that the survey found is majority believes that when they have a gay or lesbian in the family, they would like to change them to become straight men and women.

The paper will also delve into new topics in the forthcoming SWS nationwide survey to be conducted in December 2013.  The new topics will measure agreement/ disagreement with the following statements: Being gay or lesbian is contagious; Acquired Immuno Deficiency Syndrome or AIDS can be considered as a sickness of gays and lesbians; and gays or lesbians are just as trustworthy as any other Filipino.