Tonette Lopez, APNSW's human rights expert and singing star, died from complications related to diabetes on April 25, 2006Tonette was a proud sex worker and transgender rights advocate, who fought publicly for the rights of sex workers and sexual minorities in the Philippines and across the Asia Pacific Region.Tonette was loved and admired by all who met her in APNSW and NSWP. She was known both as our “whore of the law” and as “the singing lawyer”. At an APNSW South East Asia meeting in 2004, Tonette composed a sex workers rights anthem for APNSW which has since been translated into at least 4 other languages and is sung by sex worker activists all over Asia.
"Knowing myself is the strength I had when I started to take a stand, make astand and made that stand to be known, and from THIS DAY forwardI WILL NOT REST until such time that our human rights are no longer violated."
"Time and over again, I have given up myself and devoted most of my timein fighting causes on issues that perpetuate oppression and marginalization.It is in this field that I can find fulfillment in life and the essence of living."
A compilation of tributes and condolence messages from the APNSW community is available (pdf document).