This week, dozens of transgendered individuals and some non-governmental organizations (“NGOs”) celebrated Kartini Day by distributing white roses in front of the Bajra Sandhi Balinese Struggle Monument in Denpasar. In addition to passing out the roses, the groups also delivered speeches, performed a play, and gathered signatures from individuals in the community.
The participating NGOs included the Kuta Trans-Gender Organization (“Ogawata”), Community Care Network for Balinese Women and Children, Legal Aid Institute (LBH) of Bali, Lentara Anak Bali, Yayasan Manikaya Kauci, Mitra Kasig Bali Woman Forum, LBH Apik Bali, Yayasan Gaya Dewata, Generasi Bisa, and University Students Executive Board (BEM) from several universities in Bali.
The President of the Ogawata Organization stated that they participate in these events because woman are often not treated fairly and often victims of violence.
Speeches throughout Kartini Day focused on ending any form of violence against women and children, taking firm actions against perpetrators of such violence, ending violence against women and children in minority groups, and striving to make the Indonesian parliament at least fifty percent female. Participating organizations also specifically asked the local regions of Bali to create regulations which protect the rights of women and children and to set up shelters to assist victims of violence.
According to Luh Anggreni, a spokesperson for LBH Apik Bali, there were 205 domestic cases of violence in Bali in 2012, however, only a few of these case were brought to full prosecutions and most cases were dismissed to pressure from supporters of the perpetrator. In addition, the leader of Legal Aid Institutions Bali Yastini stressed the importance of clearly resolving cases of violence against women and children, but also noted the difficulty in proving sexual crimes against children.
Yastini further noted at discrimination and violence if often inflicted on transgendered individuals, so showing support for all is important.