Wanted: Outstanding VAW-responsive LGUs


Wanted: Outstanding VAW-responsive LGUs

by A. Lumaque

Roxas City (17 December) -- A year-long search for outstanding local government units (LGU) and judges was launched by the National Council for the Welfare of Filipino Women (NCRFW) in recognition of the concrete efforts of the local government units (LGUs) and members of the judiciary in promoting women's human rights and in addressing gender-based violence.

NCRFW Chairperson Myrna T. Yao and Department of the Interior and Local Government Undersecretary Austere Panadero unveiled a poster about the search during the launching ceremony last month.

The search is open to all barangays, municipalities and cities with policies, programs, services and interventions, and implementing and monitoring mechanisms to address Violence Against Women (VAW).

It aims to recognize innovation of programs and methods of addressing VAW.

"Meanwhile, the Gender Justice Awards II hopes to raise the level of awareness of judges in the Philippines on the need to render gender sensitive decisions regarding VAW cases. The awards will recognize four Gender Sensitive Judges from the NCR, Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Two special awards will also be given for the Most Outstanding Gender Sensitive Judge and the Gender Sensitive Judge from the Shar'ia Courts. This activity is geared to complement the theme for this year's celebration of the 18-day Campaign which highlights good governance and women's access to justice," said a NCRFW portal news.

"These two awards want to bring across the message that LGUs as frontline service providers, especially at the Barangay level should respond quickly and sensitively to VAW victim-survivors. At the same time, judges must understand and consider the unequal power relations between women and men in the family and the society when dealing with VAW cases. As court decisions have great impact on victim-survivors of VAW, misconceptions about rape and other forms of VAW must be corrected to be able to render gender-sensitive decisions on VAW cases," NCRFW Chairperson Yao said in the online news.

NCRFW is the government's machinery for women's advancement created in 1975 through Presidential Decree No. 633. (PIA)

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Boracay, Aklan