Thursday, 15 August 2013

Independent: Push Backs: Drachma LGBT withdraws from consultative council
Thursday, 11 July 2013, 12:00

Drachma LGBT said that it will be withdrawing from the LGBT Consultative Council as an organisation until matters are clarified regarding the migrant push backs.

Drachma LGBT is a group of gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender people who meet to pray together.

It's the second NGO, after Aditus, to have withdrawn from the council in a matter of days.

“We believe that our government should strive to work for the human rights of all, including those of asylum seekers. We look forward to possible future opportunities for collaboration in order to help Malta become a better and more humane society,” the group said in a statement.

“Drachma LGBT has always strived to uphold human dignity for all, irrespective of gender, colour, race, religion and any other -ism because human rights are for all and not for restricted sections of the human race.

“While acknowledging and emphasising the need for legal rights for LGBTI individuals in Malta and the need to work against any form of discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression, we believe that striving for human rights should be done in all circumstances and not only when our self-interests are at stake.

“The recent move to push back potential asylum seekers to Libya and what in our opinion is the disregard of the serious risk of harm to such individuals is of grave concern for us. “In light of the most recent words of Pope Francis “The Globalisation of indifference” and his observations that we have lost the capability to cry, to feel for others, we want to send a clear message that the lives of irregular migrants with whom we share a common humanity matter to us as well.

“If self and national interests become paramount our society risks becoming more shallow and deadly.

“Indeed, in Malta we pride ourselves as being a country that offers impeccable hospitality – including within Maltese tourism adverts.

“Yet, we are selective in deciding who deserves to receive our hospitality. As Drachma LGBT we want to stand for a congruent way of life without denying that at the political level irregular migration is a complex issue, but not at the price of the humanity of others and that of ourselves.”

The group expressed its deep regret from having to withdraw from participating within the LGBT Consultative Council for the time being and until matters are clarified.

“Illegal and immoral treatment of foreigners who do not offer a lucrative value to the country is as serious, as immoral and as discriminatory as that experienced by LGBTI individuals and our own lack of full inclusion within society’s structures. As Christians we feel that national borders are secondary to the common humanity we share.”

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