PHILIPPINE National Police (PNP) Chief Archie Gamboa said there is nothing wrong in inviting people to police stations for profiling, but he stressed that those invited have the right to refuse.
“I don't think there is something wrong about it. When you apply for loans in banks you indicate everything about yourself... When you apply for loan you fill up every form, when you apply for passport you fill up every form hindi ba?” he said in a press conference in Camp Crame.
“There is nothing wrong with that if you invite people but that person you are inviting can always refuse. So kung ayaw mo hindi ka puwedeng pilitin ng pulis unless there is a different reason for you being brought to the police station,” he added.
Gamboa made the statement following the reported implementation of “Oplan X-men” in Makati City where transwomen are being invited to the police station for profiling.
At least 67 people have allegedly been invited to the station.
The LGBTQ community has condemned the alleged profiling while the Commission on Human Rights said it will conduct an investigation on the matter.
Police also reportedly failed to explain the conduct of the operation.
“This recent incident further highlights the violence and harassment experienced every day by the LGBTQI community because of their sexual orientation and gender identity,” CHR spokesperson Jacqueline de Guia said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Makati Police Chief Rogelio Simon said the effort is part of their anti-criminality campaign following several crime incidents involving foreigners, transwomen and prostitutes in the area.
“May anti-crime campaign kami sa area at isa yun sa mga naisip namin na strategy pero not targeting members of the LGBT alone. Dahil talamak ang crimes involving foreign nationals na ang suspects ay puro mga prostitutes at ladyboys,” he said in a text message.
“Halos lahat (complainants) ayaw magfile ng complaint dahil nahihiya sila at abala sa kanila dahil ayaw ng hassle at ayaw maabala or paalis narin ng bansa,” he added.
Simon said he has already ordered the relief of two policemen who were in a viral video showing them inviting a transwoman identified as Anne Pelos February 14 to police station for profiling.
In the said video, the two cops failed to explain the reason behind the profiling.
He said the two will undergo retraining and gender sensitivity workshop.
Simon apologized for the misunderstanding and said he will meet with the LGBTQI community in their area to explain the matter. (SunStar Philippines)