A transgender woman was handcuffed 'like a criminal' after a shopping mall cleaner stopped her from using the ladies' toilets. Gretchen Custodio Diez, 28, was about to enter the restroom in the Quezon City area of Manila, the Philippines, when a female cleaner, Chair Ganal, is said to have blocked her path and refused to let her use them on August 13. Gretchen, wearing a jacket and black dress, filmed the incident in the Quezon City area of Manila, the Philippines. The worker is heard arguing with Gretchen, telling her 'You still have a penis, remember that'.
The cleaner, then allegedly took her down to the basement and held her inside a room isolated from other shoppers. She was also caught on film repeatedly trying to take the phone while appearing to hit her. When police arrived a few hours later they handcuffed Gretchen 'like a shoplifter' before frogmarching her to the police station. The mall filed a complaint against the shopper, which was later dropped. Gretchen also received an apology letter coming from the cleaner who admitted she had 'made a mistake'.
Chair wrote: 'I want to apologise to Gretchen. I hope with this apology she will give me a second chance. 'I am only human. It was not my intention to offend her. I am willing to study the rights of LGBT. That is all. I am sorry.' Police said Gretchen was first taken to the Quezon City Police District (QCPD) Station 7, then to the QCPD's Anti-Cybercrime Division because officers were confused on how to handle her case citing that it was the first time it has happened.
Gretchen said: 'For me, it was like I was a shoplifter being dragged inside the mall, with people looking at me as I was being held.' I could not understand how, in a supposedly gender-fair city, there is a person who would treat me like I committed a crime.' Joy Belmonte, the Mayor of Quezon City, criticised the shopping centre and said the city would work to protect the rights of the LGBT+ community.