LGBT activists, facing a barrage of homophobia and hate speech by Indonesian authorities, are setting up hotlines and safehouses, while "unfriending" people on social media and deleting website directories that could expose them to violence. Indonesia's LGBT rights groups have been active for decades and have come under attack before, but usually only for one or two days at a time. This time, the anti-LGBT rhetoric began about two months ago, say activists who describe a community living in fear.
"This is the first time it's actually lasted this long," said Dede Oetomo, a prominent activist who founded one of the country's oldest LGBT rights groups, GAYa NUSANTARA, in 1987. There have been a few incidents of LGBT people being harassed, and Oetomo said LGBT groups are now working to set up safehouses and draw up evacuation plans in case of need.