Press Release
November 25, 2019


On the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, we need to push back harder in rejecting the misogyny of those in positions of power.

What do we do when no less than the man occupying the highest post in the land promotes rape culture through his misogynistic statements and his sexual harassment of women in public? What do we do when this attitude emboldens others to blame women for the sexual violence, harassment or rape inflicted upon them, while the perpetrators of the crimes are held blameless and walk away scot-free?

Let us strongly reject all forms of harassment committed everyday so that women are able to express themselves without stigma. Let us guarantee full protection of their rights so they can be free to pursue their dreams.

In line with this endeavor, I co-authored Republic Act No. 11313 or the Safe Spaces Act that protects everyone from gender-based sexual harassment in public, private, and online spaces. But we need to do more.

In the present Congress, our work continues in eliminating discrimination and patriarchal systems that set back the women's struggle for social liberation. As such, I filed Senate Bill No. 1148 that seeks to increase the number of female police officers in the Philippine National Police to provide women more equitable access to employment in law enforcement. This also hopes to boost a gender-sensitive police force that will be as active in enforcing anti-VAW (violence against women) laws as any other criminal statute.

I also filed Senate Bill No. 622 which raises the age of sexual consent from 12 to 18 years old to protect minors against rape because adolescent girls are vulnerable to sexual exploitation and abuse.

Armed with the full resolve to call out abhorrent treatment of women, let us courageously stand up and not cower in silence, even if those in power choose to denigrate women by their action or inaction. We should put an end to all forms of violence against women. Misogyny and the violence against women that it enables have no place in a just society that values freedom and upholds the dignity of all.


PNP Custodial Center, Camp Crame

25 November 2019

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