A number of conservative Indonesian legislators have drafted an anti-gay, “pro-family” bill that, if it overcomes prominent opposition, would set up “rehabilitation” centers for LGBT people.
The Muslim-majority nation has been arguing about and abusing the rights of sexual minorities for several years, with LGBT Indonesians facing a spike in police raids at their workplaces, homes and entertainment venues.
While homosexuality is not illegal except in Aceh Province and a few other locales, LGBT people are often publicly shamed by authorities, while others have been charged under the country’s anti-pornography law.
Opponents of the draft Family Resilience Bill include:
- Puan Maharani, Indonesia’s parliamentary speaker, who said the bill is “too interventionist” and “too intrusive” into people’s private lives.
- Mustaghfiroh Rahayu, an activist with the women’s wing of Indonesia’s largest Muslim organisation, who stated, “Who has the authority to deem what is deviant or not?”
Supporters include the Islamic PKS party and some members of the Gerindra, Golkar and PAN parties, which are part of Indonesia’s ruling coalition.
International reactions to the proposal have perhaps exaggerated the likelihood that the proposal will become law, such as the Gay Star News headline “Indonesia plans to make homosexuality a crime and force offenders into rehab camps.”
The so-called Family Resilience Bill, which covers many aspects of family life in Indonesia, outlines measures that can be taken to assist families “in crisis” — including those undergoing financial difficulties, job demands, divorce, chronic disease or death.
“Sexual deviation”, meanwhile — defined by the draft law as those who engage in sadism, masochism, homosexual sex, or incest — is named as [an additional] form of family crisis requiring intervention.
In cases of family crisis caused by sexual deviation, it recommends that people undergo “social or psychological rehabilitation”, “spiritual guidance”, or “medical rehabilitation”. …
Under the proposed law, female civil servants and employees of state-owned enterprises would be granted six months’ paid maternity or paternity leave, without disadvantage to their position.
But it also stipulates that it is “required” for a wife to “regulate household affairs as well as possible” and “fulfil the rights of the husband and children according to religious norms”.
The Jakarta Post reported that the draft bill includes these sections:
“Families experiencing crises due to sexual deviation are required to report their members to agencies handling family resilience or rehabilitation institutions to undergo treatment,” Article 86 of the draft bill states.
The bill also requires adults experiencing “sexual deviation” to report to authorities or relevant rehabilitation centers, which would be established by a state body responsible for family resilience.
The bill has been included on parliament’s priority list for the 2020-2024 period, though proponents have yet to discuss it with the government’s related ministries.
Parties supporting President Joko Widodo currently control 74% of seats in parliament so any bill would likely need government blessing to gain traction.
Supratman Andi Agtas, a member of parliament who heads a body overseeing the agenda of lawmakers, said a draft would be sent to the president before any deliberation between MPs and related ministries could start.
- Indonesian human rights agency opposes LGBT raids (
- Indonesia: Muslim preacher warns of gay corruption via K-pop (
- Complaint: Indonesian mayor promotes anti-gay discrimination (
- Interview: Indonesians are gay-friendly if not brainwashed (
- As AIDS rises in Indonesia, coalition urges LGBTI vigilance
- Indonesia plunges deeper into anti-gay panic
- Archive of this blog’s articles about Indonesia