TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, March 26(PIA) – In line with the International Women’s Month Celebration, some women’s rights advocate in the city encouraged all women in vulnerable circumstances to assert their rights and file complaints against their spouses who are circumventing their rights.
During the “Harampang ha PIA” held Thursday at PIA Regional Office 8, Senior Police Officer 3 Marissa Monge, in-charge of the Women’s and Children Protection Desk of the Tacloban City Police Office said, their office is 24 hours open to all women who are victims of all kinds of violence or whose rights are being violated by their husbands and partners.
“Violence against women and their children” refers to any act or a series of acts committed by any person against a woman who is his wife, former wife, or against a woman with whom the person has or had a sexual or dating relationship, or with whom he has a common child, or against her child whether legitimate or illegitimate, within or outside the family abode, which result in or is likely to result in physical, sexual, psychological harm or suffering, or economic abuse including threats of such acts, battery, assault, coercion, harassment or arbitrary deprivation of liberty.
Chief Inspector Ma. Bella D. Rentuaya, Chief of the Tacloban City Police Community Relations Office also said as part of their advocacy campaign police personnel went to barangays to strengthen awareness of the law. They even conducted family development sessions in coordination with the City Social Welfare and Development Office in 138 barangays.
“Women must be empowered and motivated to assert their rights regardless of their level of education and or socio-economic status. It is necessary for all individuals, especially women in vulnerable circumstances to have full knowledge of their rights and access to legal recourse against violations of their rights”, she added.
Meanwhile, as an advocate of women’s rights, Lawyer Jo Ann Yu Balaga of PUMA Law Office gave an assurance that she is willing to render free legal advice to women in the city who are victims of violence.
Records at the Tacloban’s women and children protection desk (WCPD) show that 619 reported cases of violence against women were recorded in 2014. Most of these are physical violence. (ajc/cba/PIA-8)