OhmyNews has a new article titled 77% of kids who are teased for seeming gay say that they want to die that continues to the discussion on the Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education's Comprehensive Plan for Student Human Rights and its provisions as it relates to LGBTQ+ discrimination. Please see this post for more background.
"The Seoul superintendent wants to teach children as young as three years old about homosexuality, radical feminism, and socialism. We must stop it. Regardless if you are not a Seoul citizen."
-A recent text message found on a protestant messaging board.
Recently messages on Kakao Talk have encouraged signing petitions to the Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education (SMOE). SMOE's contents on 'protecting LGBTQ+ students' found in the Comprehensive Plan for Student Rights, which is planned for March and lasts three years, had no sooner been announced than some opposition forces began to grow. So far, 33,036 people have signed the petition.
Looking at LGBTQ+ counseling contents, 20% is about suicide and self-harm
Responding to OhmyNews on the 16th to the claim that it is 'promoting homosexuality', Seung-hee Yu (of the LGBTQ+ youth center Dding-dong) stated that protecting LGBTQ+ students from discrimination and hatred does not have this meaning at all. Yu emphasized that these attacks and slander are adding another scar to students already suffering from depression and a high suicide rate
According to the organization's '2019-2020 Activity Report', among the 400 consultations provided, 81 (20.2%) included contents related to suicide or self harm.
Speaking of these results, Yu stated that "At school, LGBTQ+ adolescents are teased over and over by both their friends and their teachers "You seem gay" or "You seem like a lesbian" which in turn leads to a situation where a child is thinking more about suicide or self harm" and that "the protection provided by he Comprehensive Plan for Student rights is the minimal educational protection that can be provided to remove violence and hatred about LGBTQ+ students."
This organization provides counseling to at least one LGBTQ+ student a day. Recently, one student requested counseling services after hearing the following from a teacher:
"You should think with sorrow toward your parents about your strange appearance."
Recently the national assembly released survey results for the "Transgender Survey on Hate and Discrimination" where 67% of respondents agreed with the statement that "I have experienced a teacher made degrading remarks about LGBTQ+ individuals during a middle or high school class." 21.3% agreed with the statement that they faced violence or unwarrantable treatment from their teacher related to their sexuality. This survey targeted 591 transgender people who were at least 19 of age and lived in Korea.
When facing hatred or unwarrantable treatment and suffer from bullying, the rate of students that have thoughts about suicide or self-harm can go nowhere but up. According to the 2006 "Survey on LGBTQ+ Youth" 77.4% have stated that they thought about suicide and 60.2% answered that they have stated they want to commit suicide. 47.4% have attempted suicide. This was a survey to LGBTQ+ youth targeting 135 people.
In 2014, the Korea Gay Human Rights group Between Friend (Chingu Sai) conducted a survey titled "Facing discrimination and violence because of LGBTQ+ identity" with youth younger than 18. In this survey, the suicide attempt and self-harm attempts were at 41% and 48% respectively. But for those who said that they didn't experience discrimination or violence? The suicide attempt and self-harm attempts were down to 21% and 27% respectively.
SMOE's Student Right's Advocate Yeong-jun Kim told OhmyNews that "Students facing hatred and discrimination because they are called a sexual minority goes beyond a legal problem and moves into an education and moral problem" and explained that "We have to prioritize the safety of LGBTQ+ students and resolve any remaining issues with sexual harassment and discrimination to create a more humane school culture. That's the reason for the comprehensive plan."
SMOE is planning on sending the Comprehensive Plan for Student Human Rights in March.