Amnesty wants civil service ban on LGBT job applicants scrapped

Jawa Pos – November 24, 2019
State civil service applicants entrance exam (Jawa Pos)
State civil service applicants entrance exam (Jawa Pos)

Muhammad Ridwan – Amnesty International Indonesia Executive Director Usman Hamid has asked for the discriminative requirements in the selection of candidate state civil servants (CPNS) to be scrapped. These discriminative requirements, among other things, ban Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people from taking part in the CPNS selection.

“This policy is disappointing. Indonesia should recruit the best candidates as state civil servants. Not apply conditions which contain hatred against certain groups and has no basis”, said Hamid in a press release on Sunday November 24.

Hamid is of the view that these discriminative requirements must be scrapped immediately and that they violate human rights (HAM).

“Requirements which are discriminative must be scrapped immediately because they violate the Constitution and are not in accordance with Indonesia’s obligations under international HAM laws”, asserted Hamid.

Hamid’s remarks were in response to an earlier statement by Attorney General’s Office (AGO) spokesperson Mukri who said that the AGO only wants applicants who are normal. They also require that applicants have an ideal body posture with a standard Body Mass Index (BMI) of between 18 and 25 and not suffer from physical or mental disabilities.

In addition to this, said Hamid, the Trade Ministry also banned LGBT job applicants although this requirement has since been removed. Meanwhile the Defense Department has also banned pregnant women from applying for jobs.

“The Ombudsman has already criticised these discriminative policies and urged the ministries to remove them”, said Hamid accusingly.

In responding to the issue of discriminative CPNS requirements, Administrative and Bureaucratic Reform Minister Tjahjo Kumolo said earlier that it was the right of government institutions to determine their own criteria for perspective employees.

“I think it’s quite legitimate. They want people who are perfect, right, that’s allowed”, said Kumolo in Jakarta on Friday November 22.

Likewise on the AGO’s ban on LGBT job applicants, with Kumolo saying he doesn’t have a problem with it. “I agree with the AGO, there isn’t any problem”, said the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) politician.

[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Amnesty International Minta Syarat Diskriminatif bagi CPNS Dicabut”.]