Yangon 25th June, 2019
The Myanmar LGBTIQA+ community is shocked and deeply saddened to receive the news that a young gay man named Kyaw Zin Win, working as librarian at Myanmar Imperial University – MIU committed suicide
in Yangon yesterday after being forcibly outed, harassed and bullied by co-workers in a brutal case of discrimination and bullying in the workplace induced by the victim’s sexual orientation.
Kyaw Zin Win, who has been described in social media as “an accomplished, honest, down-to-earth and hard-working young man” was a reserved person who didn’t disclose his sexual orientation to even close family members. However, he was forced to come out to his supervisor at Myanmar Imperial University – MIU following feedbacks from third parties. This traumatic experience led to further attacks and harassment by co-workers on social media, who ridiculed him and his sexual orientation. Among such comments, a co-worker wrote on a Viber group chat “all of you, don’t become an imbecile like him.” Moments before taking his own life, Kyaw Zin Win exposed on his Facebook profile screenshots from other co-coworkers’ conversations suggesting he should be sent into the military, among other mocking remarks.
As a community, WE MOURN this tragic loss of life and demand justice for Kyaw Zin Win.
WE CONDEMN Myanmar Imperial University – MIU and its management for forcibly outing Kyaw Zin Win and for allowing such despicable bullying behavior to take place at the workplace. The evidences point at a very
serious case of discrimination and abuse at the workplace that amounts to human rights violation.
WE DEMAND that immediate action, be it civil and/or penal, is taken against the perpetrators and that Myanmar Imperial University – MIU issues a public apology and enforces measures conducive to prevent these
circumstances from repeating again.
Issues around gender-based violence and abuse need to be addressed for the LGBTIQA+ community in Myanmar. This is the second case reported on social media in less than a month of young LGBT that commits suicide after suffering from bullying. It is vitally important to enforce legislation and other measures promoting equality and protecting people from discrimination in the workplace and in wider society.
WE STRONGLY URGE the government of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar –
(i) To protect the LGBTIQA+ individuals through the revision and enactment of relevant legislation in accordance with the provisions set forth in International Human Rights Treaties and Conventions
inclusive of but not limited to the repeal of Section 377 and the passing of an Anti-Discrimination Law.
(ii) To dedicate resources to the empowerment of LGBTIQA+ towards a harmonious society that respects the human rights of LGBTIQA+.
(iii) To allocate resources and enact policies that guarantee the access of LGBTIQA+ to psychosocial support services and mental health service providers.
(iv) To establish a clear written/informed policy in schools and workplaces for the inclusion of people with different sexual orientations and gender identities/expressions.
For more information :
Dr. Pyae Sone Hein : 097666 50624 ; OWEN : 09 4599 72 933
Hla Myat Tun : 09 799 576 378 ; Violaine Beix : 09968709919
Equality Myanmar
Juan : 09400686387 ; Office : 09448023569
National Transgender People Alliance of Myanmar – NTPAM
Naw Yaya Aye Myat : 09450009116