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Asia-Pacific regional forum will celebrate family diversities

The inaugural Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum will hold several events over 2 days to coincide with The International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOT) global 2017 theme focus issues being on “families”. The forum will raise awareness of the existence of rainbow families in the Asia-Pacific region and highlight the importance of family support. Personal experiences from Australia, China, Fiji, Hong Kong, Japan, Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam will be shared in support of research findings advocating for the urgent need for recognition, protection and equal treatment of rainbow families and LGBTI people.
Thursday 11th May 2017:

Gayby Baby: Hong Kong Premiere
Registration, Networking and Light Refreshments[a] 6.15 – 6.30pm
6.30 – 6.40pm
Welcome Remarks and Opening of Asia-Pacific Rainbow Family Forum

Speakers:
David Aughey[b][c], Head of Legal, Asia-Pacific at Bloomberg LP.

The Honourable Michael Kirby AC CMG (Video Address)

Damien Dunn, Consul, Australian[d] Consul-General, Hong Kong

6.40 – 8.05pm
Screening of Gayby Baby Documentary: Hong Kong Premiere
Gayby Baby is an Australian documentary about the experiences of kids with same-sex parents. Told from the perspective of the kids, Gayby Baby is an intimate and sometimes humorous account of four children and their families.

8.10 – 8.50pm
Panel Discussion – Gayby Babies in Asia-Pacific

Speakers:
Darcy Davison-Roberts, Assistant Solicitor at Daly & Associates

Aries Liu, Organiser 彩虹爱宝贝”Rainbow*Love*Babies”
Maivon Wahid Cpp (CIPD) Snr Analyst Digital & Strategic Transformation, Country Lead, ANZ Pride Network Fiji

Moderator:
Bess Hepworth, Founder, Planet Ally, Advisor, Being LGBTI and Asia-Pacific Transgender Network and Co-founder of the Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum

8.55 – 9.00pm
Closing Remarks

Speakers:
Lilian Wu, Producer, Inside the Chinese Closet

Maria von Känel, IFED Founder & Coordinator
Friday 12th May 2017 Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum
8.00-8.30am
Registration, Networking and Tea and Coffee
8.30 – 8.45am
Welcome Remarks and IFED Video[e]

Speakers:
David Aughey, Head of Legal, Asia-Pacific at Bloomberg LP

Bess Hepworth, Founder, Planet Ally, Advisor, Being LGBTI and Asia-Pacific Transgender Network and Co-founder of the Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum

The Honourable Michael Kirby AC CMG (Video Address) [f]

Maria von Känel, IFED Founder & Coordinator
8.45 – 9.40am
Assisted Reproductive Technology in Asia-Pacific

Speakers:
Stephen Page, Partner, Harrington Family Lawyers, Chair, Surrogacy Australia Legal Committee

Dr Cecilia, Chan Hoi Yan, Assistant Professor, Dept of Social Work and Social Administration, University of Hong Kong.

Jacqui Tomlins, Rainbow Family and Australian Marriage Equality Campaigner

Video Link:
Dr. Sandy Chuan, San Diego Fertility Centre

Dr. Susanna J. Park, San Diego Fertility Centre

Richard ç, Founder Surrogacy with Confidence, Author of Our Journey, One Couple’s Guide to US Surrogacy

Moderator:
Marty Forth: Rainbow Families of Hong Kong, Coordinator
9.30- 9.45am
Rainbow Families and Human Rights

Speakers: (Video Address)
ProfessorEmeritus Vitit Muntarbhorn, the United Nations Independent Expert charged with investigating Violence and Discrimination based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity.
9.40 – 10.25am
A Legislative Overview for Rainbow Families in Asia

Speakers
Ging Cristobal, Project Coordinator for Asia, OutRight International

Peter Fenyves, Will Writer, Professional Wills Ltd

Azan Marwah, Barrister / Mediator at Gilt Chambers

Stephen Page, Partner, Harrington Family Lawyers, Chair, Surrogacy Australia Legal Committee

Moderator:
Annemarie Evans, Broadcaster/Journalist, RTHK
10.25 – 10.30am
Hornet #WeAreOne Support Taiwan: Global Action for IDAHOT

Speakers:
Bess Hepworth, Founder, Planet Ally, Advisor, Being LGBTI and Asia-Pacific Transgender Network and Co-founder of the Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum

Maivon Wahid Cpp (CIPD) Snr Analyst Digital & Strategic Transformation, Country Lead, ANZ Pride Network Fiji
10.30 – 10.45am
Coffee and Networking Break
10.45 – 10.55am
Rainbow Families Country Profile:[v] Japan

Speakers:
Hal Ono, Founder & Coordinator for Nijiiro-Kazoku (Rainbow Family Japan)

Kumiko Matsumoto, Nijiiro-Kazoku (Rainbow Family Japan)
10.55 – 11.05am
Rainbow Families Country Profile: Thailand

Speaker:
Matcha Phorn-in, Director, Sangsan Anakot Yawachon Development Project
11.05 – 11.15am
Rainbow Families Country Profile: Philippines

Speaker:
Ging Cristobal, Project Coordinator for Asia, OutRight International
11.15 – 12.00pm
Asia-Pacific Travel and Safe Spaces for Rainbow Families

Speakers:
Ging Cristobal, Project Coordinator for Asia, OutRight International

Darcy Davison-Roberts, Assistant Solicitor at Daly & Associates

Sachi Qin, Director Director of TaTa-Les Support, China

Maivon Wahid Cpp (CIPD) Snr Analyst Digital & Strategic Transformation, Country Lead, ANZ Pride
Network Fiji

Moderator:
Marion McDonald, Chief Strategy Officer, Asia Pacific Region, Ogilvy Public Relations, Founder, Ogilvy Pride Hong Kong
12.00 – 12.30pm
Rainbow Families Country Profile: Hong Kong and China[w]

Speakers:
Brian Leung, Campaign Manager, Big Love Alliance

Sachi Qin, Director Director of TaTa-Les Support, China
12.30 – 1.15pm
Lunch and Networking
1.15 – 2.00pm
The Kids Are More Than Alright

PFLAG Vietnam Video

Speakers:
Matcha Phorn-in, Director, Sangsan Anakot Yawachon Development Project

Kumiko, Nijiiro-Kazoku, (Rainbow Family Japan)

Tan Loke Khoon, Partner, Baker McKenzie

Jacqui Tomlins, Rainbow Family and Australian Marriage Equality Campaigner

Ricki-Lee Van Het Wout, Master of Architecture Student at The University of Hong Kong

Moderator:
Marty Forth: Rainbow Families of Hong Kong, Coordinator
2.00 – 2.45pm
Rainbow Families in the Eyes of Faith, Society and the Media

Speakers:
Annabelle Baker, ‎Director at LUSH Asia

Aries Liu, Organiser 彩虹爱宝贝(Rainbow*Love*Babies)

James Yang, Policy Analyst, UNDP, China, Being LGBTI in Asia

Pearl Wong, Executive Secretary, Queer Theology Academy

Moderator:
Bess Hepworth, Founder, Planet Ally, Advisor, Being LGBTI and Asia-Pacific Transgender Network and Co-founder of the Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum
2.45 – 3.00pm
Closing Remarks and Rainbow Families Video

Speakers:
Bess Hepworth, Founder, Planet Ally, Advisor, Being LGBTI and Asia-Pacific Transgender Network and Co-founder of the Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum
Maria von Känel, IFED Founder & Coordinator [ad] 3.00 – 3.15pm
Networking Break and Prepare for Closed Delegate Forums [ae] 3.15 – 4.00pm
Delegate Workshop: Closed Forum: APAC Rainbow Family Delegates
Mental Health and Well-being of Families with Same-sex/Diverse Parents
Facilitators:
Ging Cristobal, Project Coordinator for Asia, OutRight International
Maria von Känel, IFED Founder & Coordinator
4.00 – 4.45pm
Delegate Workshop: Closed Forum: Asia-Pacific Rainbow Family Delegates
Yogyakarta Principles (Principle 24), UPR Mechanisms and UN Definition of Families

Yogyakarta Principles: The Right to Found a Family
Everyone has the right to found a family, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Families exist in diverse forms. No family may be subjected to discrimination on the basis of the sexual orientation or gender identity of any of its members.
More details: http://www.yogyakartaprinciples.org/principle-24/
UN Definition of Families
During the 31st session of the Council, the High Commissioner for Human Rights presented his report on the Protection of the family, recalling the lack “definition of the family under international human rights law” and the need to “recognize the diverse and changing forms of the family institution, in accordance with the different social, cultural and economic characteristics of every society; the promotion of equality between men and women; and the effective protection and promotion of the rights of women, children, persons with disabilities, older persons and any other family member, without distinctions. Moreover, ensuring universal access to sexual and reproductive health services, including family planning, should be an integral part of development efforts.”

The report notes that “international standards set forth at least two minimum conditions for the recognition and protection of families at the national level: first, the respect for the principle of equality and non-discrimination, including the equal treatment of women; and second, the effective guarantee of the best interest of the child”, adding that “the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights has called upon States to provide legal recognition of same-sex couples.”
Regarding children’s rights, the report highlights that “Children should be recognized as rights holders.” “International human rights law protects children from being discriminated against within the family on the basis of gender, disability, family status or any grounds.”
CRIN Child Rights International Network: These include entrenched conceptions of family and norms that are inconsistent with human rights and the principle of non­discrimination. Patriarchal family structures, for example, are known to solidify the cultural construction of gender and allow for gender ­based discrimination and violence against women and girls to endure. And a heteronormative conception of family fails to recognise the diversity of family structures and sexual orientations, which can result in the abandonment or abuse at the hands of family members of children who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. https://www.crin.org/sites/default/files/crin_submission_protection_of_the_family.pdf
NELFA Network of European LGBTIQ* Families Associations: http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/HRBodies/HRCouncil/ProtectionFamily/CivilSociety/NetworkEuropeanLGTB.pdf
Facilitators:
Ging Cristobal, Project Coordinator for Asia, OutRight International
Jacqui Tomlins, Rainbow Family and Australian Marriage Equality Campaigner
Maria von Känel, IFED Founder & Coordinator
4.45 – 5.00pm
Plenary Reporting and Close of Delegate Workshops
Speakers:
Ging Cristobal, Project Coordinator for Asia, OutRight International
Jacqui Tomlins, Rainbow Family and Australian Marriage Equality Campaigner
Maria von Känel, IFED Founder & Coordinator
Friday 12th May 2017
Registration, Networking and Light Refreshments 6.30 – 6.55pm
7.00 – 7.15pm
Welcome Remarks and Recap of Asia-Pacific Rainbow Family Forum
Speaker:
Bess Hepworth, Founder, Planet Ally, Advisor, Being LGBTI and Asia-Pacific Transgender Network and Co-founder of the Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum
7.15 – 8.30pm
Screening of Inside the Chinese Closet
8.30 – 9.15pm
Inside The Chinese Closet Panel Discussion
Speakers:
Mei Jie (Pu Chunmei), Subject of the documentary Inside the Chinese Closet, and a former Executive of PFLAG China
Aries Liu, Organiser 彩虹爱宝贝 (“Rainbow*Love*Babies”)
Lilian Wu, Producer, Inside the Chinese Closet
James Yang, Policy Analyst, UNDP China, Being LGBTI in Asia
Moderator:
Abby Lee, Co-Founder of Les Peches, Double Happiness and Co-Director of Pink Dot
9.25 – 9.25pm
PFLAG China – PFLAG Hong Kong Launch Announcement
Speakers:
Bess Hepworth, Founder, Planet Ally, Advisor, Being LGBTI and Asia-Pacific Transgender Network and Co-founder of the Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum
Brian Leung, Campaign Manager, Big Love Alliance
9.25 – 9.30pm
Closing Remarks
Speakers:
Bess Hepworth, Founder, Planet Ally, Advisor, Being LGBTI and Asia-Pacific Transgender Network and Co-founder of the Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum
Maria von Känel, IFED Founder & Coordinator

Event Organisers
Planet Ally
Planet Ally is a new global multimedia platform committed to LGBTI and ally travel information and advocacy. Planet Ally empowers LGBTI people and allies to make informed travel decisions.
We want to live on a planet of allies!
IFED
The first International Family Equality Day (IFED) was launched in 2012 as a sign of solidarity and pride to promote equality for all families. The 5th International Family Equality Day in 2016 was commemorated in 74 towns and 36 countries worldwide, whether on a smaller scale with picnics, gathering together, celebrating in safe spaces or with big public events. The Council of Europe recognises the IFED as an important tool to combat homophobia and transphobia and to promote a tolerant and cohesive society.

Download the OFFICIAL Press Release Asia-Pacific Rainbow Families Forum