China’s First Lady hears call from mothers for greater acceptance of LGBTIs

China’s First Lady Peng Liyuan, a World Health Organization (WHO) Goodwill Ambassador for Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS, has received a plea for more tolerance for LGBTIs in China from a group of Chinese mothers with gay children

The wife of People’s Republic of China President Xi Jinping has received a letter from a group of Chinese mothers with LGBTI children, urging the Asian superpower to do more to encourage acceptance of LGBTI people in order to combat the spread of HIV.

China’s First Lady Peng Liyuan is a World Health Organization (WHO) Goodwill Ambassador for Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS and received the letter from the five women Tuesday.

In the letter the mothers urge that Chinese lawmakers pass an anti-discrimination law covering gender identity and sexual orientation, which they believe would be a powerful weapon in stopping the spread of HIV in China.

‘According to the LGBT community, what is being done currently is not nearly enough,’ the five mothers wrote in their letter.

‘Disease control departments often stress testing and not prevention; focus is placed on individual cases and negligent of the improvement of the big picture.

‘We recommend: to start in campuses, to spread knowledge about sex and gender, to make children understand how to protect themselves; to make parents and teachers also become defenders of children’s health; and even more so, to start thinking from a legal level, to draft an “Anti-Discrimination Law” as soon as possible, in order to lessen and put an end to discrimination. This will be a great help to producing better results in our AIDS prevention.’

The mothers cited a US study that showed higher rates of HIV among gay men who were not accepted by their families compared to those who were and suggested that changing attitudes towards homosexuality in Chinese families could be important in combating the spread of the virus.

‘Our LGBT children are often still unaccepted by their families, get bullied on campus, and face discrimination from society,’ the mothers wrote.

‘They too long to grow up happily; they hope to take off all disguises and be their true selves. As mothers, we hope that we can be like you, running together with our children under the sun, giving all young people the chance to live out their Chinese dream.’

Peng Liyuan is a leading face in the fight against HIV in China and “running with children under the sun” is a reference to a televised public service announcement in which Peng recently appeared.

by Andres Potts
Source – Gay Star News