Press Release
November 28, 2023

Opening Statement of Senator Risa Hontiveros during the Committee on Foreign Relations Hearing discussing International Labour Organization Convention No. 190 or the Convention Concerning the Elimination of Violence and Harassment in the World of Work (ILO 190), and UNESCO 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions
November 28, 2023

Naimbag nga malem sa ating Committee Chair, Senator Imee Marcos, to our Majority Leader Joel Villanueva at sa lahat ng mga kasamang kong Senador, Senador Robin Padilla, sa mga union leaders partikular sa mga representatives ng Global Unions, at sa lahat ng mga bisita at resource speakers na nandito ngayon.

Bilang Chairperson ng Committee on Women and Children and Family Relations, ako po ay masayang masaya na finally natitipon-tipon tayo ngayon para simulan ang pag-concur sa pag ratipika ng nakapalapit sa aking puso, ang Convention 190 or the Convention on the Elimination of Violence and Harassment in the World of Work.

C190 defines violence and harassment as a "range of unacceptable behaviors and practices, or threats thereof, whether a single occurrence or repeated, that aim at, result in, or are likely to result in physical, psychological, sexual or economic harm, and includes gender-based violence and harassment".

As the author and sponsor of the Safe Spaces Act, which protects women in all spheres of our life including in the workplace, I know that violence in the world of work has no place in our society. Karapatan ng bawat babae ang maging ligtas saan man tayo nandoon, kasama na ang ating pinagtatrabahuhan. Women should not have to live in silence and fear, and should not have to be forced to choose between being victims of violence or losing livelihood.

Hindi dapat mamili ang mga kababaihan sa karahasan o sa pangangalam ng tiyan.

It is our duty to ensure the concurrence and ratification of ILO C190 as soon as possible. While the protection of women is paramount and is important in and of itself, violence in world of work also leads to dire social and economic consequences that affect all of us.

The concurrence in ILO C190 will pave the way for key government agencies, employers and different institutions and stakeholders to work together for an environment of a gender-violence and harassment free space for all workers - whether in the public or private sector, or in the formal or informal economy.

Alam ng karamihan sa inyo na marami na tayong pinagdaanang mga pulong, proseso at kampanya para sa ratipikasyon ng ILO C190 at upang wakasan ang lahat ng uri ng karahasan na nararanasan ng ating mga manggagawa sa iba't - ibang paraan at lugar - at ng ibat ibang sektor ng ating lipunan, lalo lalo na ang sektor ng kababaihan.

Sa katunayan, last August 23, I filed a resolution urging the executive department to ratify the ILO C 190 and also wrote a letter to our Chair, Imee Marcos requesting her Committee to lead the process of concurrence of the ILO 190. Agyamanak Chair for doing this.

I deeply believe that concurring with ILO C190 will help advance women empowerment, increase labor productivity and contribute to peaceful industrial relations. It will also support the Philippine government's effort to implement the recommendations of the ILO High Level Tripartite Mission to address violations on labor rights, and freedom of association. Finally, ILO C190 ratification will help us meet our target to achieve Sustainable Development Goals 3 and 5 - advancing full and productive employment and decent work opportunities and improved public services and socio-economic development.

I am very happy and honored that we are all here today, this is an achievement and another milestone to celebrate. We will continue to work to end violence and harassment in the world of work. Mabuhay tayong lahat, mabuhay ang kababaihan, mabuhay ang kilusang paggawa! Congratulations in advance, Madam Chair.

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