THE Quezon City Government on Tuesday introduced to the press the candidates for the 2018 Queen of Quezon City pageant.
The candidates – Erwina Tirambulo, Redj Daria Espinosa, Ehm-jay Buena Tuazon, Terresa Caranzo, Samantha Garcia, Louise Manalo, Avah Torres Pineda, Angel Artita, Shine Rodriguez, Jhade Ellorin Soberano, Naomi Fontanos, Denine Palacio, Keith Legara, Casey Banes Paculan, Scarlet Alcaraz, Yanyan Idalia, Andrea Justine Aliman, Nica Kate Sapinoso, Jhonna Castro, Maria General, Summer Lariosa, Rami Hannash, Ghen Antolin, and Pamcee Vera Perez – are all city residents.
In holding the event, the local government said it continues to endeavor to support Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) awareness. It added that the pageant offers a platform for the LGBT community to empower themselves and stop discrimination through respect, equality, pride, and empowerment.
The city marked a major advance in creating a gender-fair and gender-sensitive environment when it passed ordinance no. 2357 or the ordinance providing for a comprehensive anti-discrimination policy on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and expression (SOGIE) in 2016 with its corresponding Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR).
The candidates were screened by a committee that included Teresa Mariano, the QC Chief of Staff for Administration; Police Senior Inspector Rene Balmaceda, the first openly transgender cop in the Philippine National Police (PNP); and Andrew de Real, TV director and writer of “Godfather of Malate” and “King of Comedy Bars.”
During the pageant itself, the candidates will be judged according to their physical qualities – beauty, intelligence, and personality – and readiness to embody the ideals of the LGBT community.
From these candidates, the city will choose a new “Queen of Quezon City”, who will receive a PhP300,000 cash prize.
The “Queen of Quezon City’s” court will include “Lady Equality”, “Lady Respect”, and “Lady Pride”, who will each receive PhP100,000 pesos.
Among the candidates’ pre-pageant activities was the clean-up drive of Barangay Kamuning, in line with EPWMD’s ‘War on Waste’ campaign.
The candidates also attended a seminar on Disaster Preparedness – First Responder’s Training Course conducted by the Quezon City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (QC-DRRMO) last week.
The pre-pageant will be held on October 15 and the event’s culmination shall be on the Coronation Night on November 10, Saturday, at the University Theatre, Diliman, Quezon City.
“Makakatulong ang pageant na ‘to, unang-una sa akin. Kailangan din naming maki-cooperate, sabi nga nila, kapag nagkakaroon tayo ng pagkakaisa. Mas maganda ang kinalalabasan ng lahat. Nagpapasalamat ako sa City Government, dahil naa-acknowledge kami bilang isang LGBTQi na mailahad at ma-express kung ano at sino kami, at syempre ang kagandahan at talento na mayroon kami,” Ehm-jay Buena Tuazon from Brgy. Loyola Heights said.