Ten sewing machines have been provided to the transgenders as alternative employment for them to improve the standard of their living at Pathway's main office in Mirpur on Saturday.
Executive Secretary of Jatiya Samaj Kalyan Parishad Mohammad Jasim Uddin was the chief guest, Samaj Kalyan Parishad Deputy Director Bhabendra Nath Barai, Banglavision Senior Reporter, Noakhali Journalist Forum-NJF Dhaka General Secretary SM Faiz were special guests at the programme.
Executive Secretary of Samaj Kalyan Parishad Mohammad Jasim Uddin said, "The third gender population needs permanent employment opportunities, not extortion to earning for daily living. The government is working to bring them into the mainstream."
One of the members of the third gender community highlighted their various difficulties saying, "As the community does not have employment opportunities, so we are involved in extortion or various crimes for livelihood. Pathway is working to divert third gender from crime to employment."
He assured Pathway to get all the facilities from the Ministry of Social Welfare.
Jasim Uddin said, due to separate gender identity, transgenders are forced to live separate lives from the mainstream. They are not considered an asset to the family. In most cases they are separated by their own families. Moreover, apart from being separated from the family, they are not given any share in the family property.
Pathway Executive Director Md. Shahin said that, "The people of the third gender community are always subjected to contempt/neglect and various insults in all aspects of the society. They are very helpless, so improving their quality of life is very important. And for this, the most important thing is that we always have to change our attitude towards them. They are like our children, so they should be raised like our others child without pushing them away. They should be given opportunities in the workplace. Only then, one day, this neglected group will gradually return to the mainstream of society. Outside of biological needs, the transgender community has all kinds of capabilities, but why are they lagging behind?"
He also said, "I feel very bad seeing the life of the third gender community living in great extent in Mirpur. When I express interest in talking to them, they share the untold stories of their lives with me and say we don't want to live like this anymore? We want to stand on our own feet. They expressed such a reaction". Therefore, the distribution program of Pathway will continue to bring them back to the mainstream of society.