Ever since the Supreme Court abolished Section 377 from the Indian Penal Code, several members of the LGBTQAI (Lesbain, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer, Asexual and Intersex, also called LGBT) community feel that they can let go of their apprehensions and come out of the closet. And while it seemed like a distant dream, looks like India is on its way to accepting the queer community at workplaces as well. It’s been a couple of months since we heard the news of a transgender being hired as an employee at the food-tech startup company, Swiggy. And now, this just in from Odisha, a hospital hiring some transgenders as security guards, and we are applauding the move!
In an effort to empower members of the LGBT community, the Malkangiri district administration has appointed five transgenders as security guards at the District Headquarters Hospital (DHH). Tushar, Sonali, Durga, Kailash and Hial will now work in the labour room and post-natal care units of the hospital. Isn’t that great?
The Malkangiri district administration hired a private company and asked them to employ the members of the transgender community under the Nirmala Scheme. The scheme speaks of inclusion of transgenders into the workplace. According to a government official, the district administration has provided jobs to the third-gender people under this scheme and more such jobs will be provided to them in the near future.
The Malkangiri Police have given them the required training that will help them in doing their jobs. They will be receiving a monthly remuneration of Rs 6000-7000 along with other facilities including insurance. And while we are glad that they have been given an opportunity to make it on their own, we feel that the salaries they are being given are quite less. Although they are quite happy about the opportunity. Kailash, who has taken up the job as one of the security guards, said, “After undergoing training of 15 days, five of us joined here and we are extremely happy about it. We stay at the hospital for eight hours every day during which we take care of the patients”.
Even though there are no official records, several social activists have pointed out that there are hundreds of transgenders who face discrimination and verbal as well as physical abuse in the state. On the contrary, Odisha became the first state to give transgender people social welfare benefits such as pension and housing.
Earlier this year in October, Kerala announced that it would be funding the training of Adam Harry, who is a transgender and wants to become a commercial air pilot. Well, looks like slowly and steadily we are moving towards something positive for the country.
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