MOA Signing of EO 138 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Elino Bardillon and AIza Cabrera   
Tuesday, 22 July 2014 15:53

PRESS RELEASE

21 July 2014

Addressing the Needs of Children in Armed Conflict through EO 138:

CWC leads Ceremonial MOA Signing

 


Republic Act. No. 7610, also known as the “Special Protection of Children Against Child Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act” declares children as Zones of Peace, and such, they shall not be recruited to become members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines or its civilian units or other armed  groups, nor be allowed to take part in the fighting, or used as guides, couriers or spies.


For the last three years (2011-2013) a total 229 cases of children victims of armed conflict was served by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). In February 2014, the Philippine Daily Inquirer and international dailies Sky News Australia and New Strait Times reported three child soldiers were among the 53 people killed in a week fighting between the Philippine Army and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters.


Executive Order 138 S.2013 “Amending Executive Order (EO) No. 56 (S.2001) Adopting the Comprehensive Program Framework for Children in Armed Conflict, Strengthening the Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) and for Other Purposes” was signed and approved by Pres. Aquino last August 2, 2013.


The Comprehensive Program Framework for Children in Armed Conflict  (CIAC Program Framework) addresses the alarming involvement of children in armed conflict, either as combatants, couriers, guides, spies, medics, cooks or their recruitment for sexual purposes or in any similar, non-combatant capacity and directs national government agencies and Local Government Units (LGUs) to implement the same.


The CWC as the focal inter-agency body of the Philippine Government for children coordinates and spearhead the organization of a Monitoring, Reporting and Response System inter-agency Team (MRRS) composed of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Health (DOH), Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) among others, to respond to concerns of children in situations of armed conflict specifically to the grave child rights violations such as killing and maiming, recruitment and use of children, attacks on schools and hospitals or health facilities, abduction of children, rape and other gender-based violence and denial of humanitarian access.


Relative to the Implementation of the Children Involved in Armed Conflict (CIAC) Program Framework, the functions of Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) as lead agency in coordinating and monitoring the implementation of the CIAC Program Framework, as enhanced and approved by the CWC Board, are hereby transferred to the CWC.


An Inter-Agency Committee on Children in Armed Conflict (IAC-CIAC), constituted by virtue of a Memorandum of Agreement signed in April 2007 was formally established chaired by the CWC. Member agencies are the Commission on Human Rights (CHR), Department of Education (DepEd), Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), DILG, DOH, Department of National Defense - AFP, Department of Justice (DOJ), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), PNP, Presidential Human Rights Committee (PHRC), Presidential Management Staff (PMS) and OPAPP. The IAC-CIAC is also known as the Monitoring, Reporting and Response Team on Grave Child Rights Violations (MRRS-GCRV Team)


A ceremonial MOA signing on Executive Order 138 led by Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa, Secretary Corazon “Dinky” Soliman of DSWD , Secretary Leila De Lima of DOJ, Secretary Teresita Quintos-Deles, OPAPP, Undersecretary Albert Muyot of DepEd is scheduled on 25 July 2014 (Friday), 10:00 AM- 1:00PM at the Social Hall, 4/F Mabini Building, Malacanang Palace, Manila. The objective is to be able to gain support from other stakeholders to officially commit to fulfil their roles and responsibilities in the implementation of the EO 138 in order to operationalize the Monitoring, Reporting and Response System (MRRS) on Grave Child Rights Violations (GCRVs).

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For further inquiries, please contact:

Mr. Elino L. Bardillon/ Ms. Aiza A. Cabrera

 

Telephone No.781-1039 local 1006/2005

Last Updated on Tuesday, 22 July 2014 16:02
 
18th National Awareness Week for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation PDF Print E-mail
Written by PAIO   
Monday, 10 February 2014 14:41

Press Release

10 February 2014

18th National Awareness Week for the Prevention

of Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation


In observance of Presidential Proclamation No. 731 series of 1996 that declares the 2nd week of February of every year as "National Awareness Week for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation" or also known as "Child Sexual Abuse Awareness Week (CSAAW)", the Council for the Welfare of Children enjoin the nation to be as one in combating against child abuse.

For this year, it will be observed on February 9-15 February with the theme “Proteksyon ng Bata ...Tungkulin ng Bawat Isa". This annual observance of CSAAW provides awareness to the children, parents, communities and the society on how to make our environment safe, protective and caring for our children.

Based on the DSWD child abuse preliminary report as of January 2014, a total of 1,246 or 27% sexually abused and exploited children are served by the Department for CY 2013.

For the last three years (2011-2013), sexually abused and exploited children remains second in rank with the highest number of abuse among the type of child abuse cases served by the DSWD.

The following activities will brighten up the enthusiasm of everyone to promote the rights of the child towards a Child-Friendly Philippines:  A Caring and Protective Society for, by and with the Children.

a) Fun and Learning Day with Children led by ECPAT and TUGON, on 8 February 2014 at Belarmin Field, Ateneo De Manila University wherein 300 children (7-17 years old) from various communities in Quezon City as participants. The kick-off activity feature booths for children with different activities like theather, painting, baking, etc.

b) Policy Forum on Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation in the Cyberspace on 12 February 2014 at the Bayleaf Hotel, Intramuros, Manila where updates of the new developments on the concerns of sexual abuse and exploitation to children will be discussed with two researches to be presented.  These are the “On line Risks to Filipino Children” conducted by Stairway Foundation and the “Full Screen on View: An Exploratory Study on the Background and Psychosocial Consequences of Web Cam Child Sex Tourism in the Philippines” conducted by Terres Des Hommes Netherlands

c) Sunset Walk with Honorable DSWD Secretary Corazon Juliano-Soliman and DepEd Undersecretary Albert Muyot on 15 February 2014 at the Quezon Memorial Circle to reach the concerned agencies and the general public on the concerns of protecting children from sexual abuse and commercial sexual exploitation. This will be highlighted with a program showcasing different talents of children and music bands.

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For further inquiries, please contact:

 

Ms. Ma. Edna R.L. Estal/Mr. Elino L. Bardillo, Public Affairs and Information Office (PAIO) or Ms. Laureen Musa of Policy and Planning Division (PPD), Telephone No. 7811039 local 1005/1006.

Last Updated on Monday, 10 February 2014 14:46
 
Issue of Child Soldiers in the Country PDF Print E-mail
Written by PAIO   
Friday, 07 February 2014 17:52

Press Release

7 February 2014

CWC: Time to Seriously Address Issue of Child Soldiers in the Country


With the successful signing of the peace negotiations with the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), we must now have serious efforts to address the practice of using children as combatants in armed conflict. This is amid the efforts to neutralize other armed groups in Mindanao.

Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) Executive Director Brenda S. Vigo made this appeal as evidences of the wide use of children as soldiers again surfaced in last week’s operations of the military against the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF).

“This is unacceptable, as this violates the rights of children, and against international laws”, she said.

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) reported that photographs of children carrying rifles were among the items left as it overran the camps of the BIFF in Mindanao. The military launched this offensive two days after the government concluded peace talks with the main Muslim rebel group, the MILF. The AFP also reported that three child combatants where among the 53 BIFF fighter killed during the military offensive.

A new legal mechanism that now addresses children in armed conflict is now in place. President Aquino signed on Aug. 2, 2013, Executive Order 138 which establishes the Monitoring, Reporting and Response System (MRRS) for Grave Child Rights Violations in Situations of Armed Conflict. The six violations include: 1) killing and maiming of children; 2) recruitment and use of children; 3) attack on schools and hospitals; 4) abduction of children; 5) rape and other grave sexual violence against children; and 6) denial of humanitarian access.

This amended the Executive Order 56 of 2001 which adopted the Comprehensive Framework for children in Armed Conflict. The new MRRS aims to protect children in situations of armed conflict by preventing the occurrence of grave child rights violations, and ensuring appropriate and timely response in the event of such violations.

It also generates data and information to guide the MRRS inter-agency team composed of the AFP, the Philippine National Police (PNP), DILG, DepEd, DFA, DOJ, CHR, Presidential Human Rights Committee (PHRC), Presidential Management Staff (PMS), the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP), and the CWC which takes the lead in implementing the MRRS.

DSWD Secretary Corazon J. Soliman, who is also CWC chair said: “We want that children are victimized no more in this condemnable manner by adults. We must put an end to the recruitment of children as warriors.”

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For further inquiries, please contact:

Mr. Elino L. Bardillon/Ms. Aiza A. Cabrera

Tel. No. 781-1039 local 1005/2003

 

Last Updated on Friday, 07 February 2014 18:01
 
NO TO CHILD ABUSE AND PORNOGRAPHY: A Call from CWC PDF Print E-mail
Written by PAIO   
Wednesday, 05 February 2014 15:14

PRESS RELEASE

05 February 2014


NO TO CHILD ABUSE AND PORNOGRAPHY: A Call from CWC


The Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) under the leadership of Executive Director Brenda S. Vigo, together with other stakeholders on children condemn the recent reports on child sexual abuse and child pornography cases.


CWC is the government’s inter-agency body which is mandated to formulate policies and plans for children’s well-being and monitor the implementation and enforcement of laws to protect and promote children’s rights. CWC is closely monitoring the persistent issues on violation of children’s rights including the child sexual abuse and pornography in cyberspace. CWC monitors these issues in coordination with the Inter-Agency Council Against Child Pornography (IACACP) chaired by the DSWD and the Inter-Agency Council Against Trafficking (IACAT) chaired by the DOJ. Efforts already undertaken by law enforcers included the conduct of raid operations in Cordova, Cebu on child pornography cases


Child Pornography is a new form of child sexual exploitation fuelled by rapid technological advances, increasing global connectivity, persisting poverty rates, and growing disparity in the global distribution of resources.


DSWD data showed 46 cases of child pornography and cyber pornography served from 2010 to 2013 while PNP Angelnet reported 12 cases of child pornography, 2 cases of on-line child abuse and 2 cases of cyber-bullying from March to November 2013. On the other hand, the Terre des Hommes Netherlands exploratory study on the background and psychosocial consequences of web cam tourism in the Philippines (conducted in the 44 cases of victims of webcam child sex tourism in Angeles City and Taguig City, Cebu City and municipalities of Cordova and Dalaguete in Cebu Province) reveals that the country’s web cam child sex tourism is proliferating and spreading quickly through the use of internet. This phenomenon, according to the study remained undiscovered until 2011 when the country successfully prosecuted its first case against two Swedish nationals and three Filipinos. Children involved in webcam child sex tourism generally perform webcam sex shows from their home computers, from Internet cafes, or from what are known as “cybersex dens”. Webcam sex operations have become widespread and family members are aware that a lot of money is earned from it.


A Policy forum on Protecting Children in the Cyberage co-organized by CWC, IACACP, IACAT and DOJ was conducted in December 2013. The concerned agencies, service providers, faith-based groups and children were gathered to discuss emerging concerns on child pornography and committed action points to address the issue.


As part of CWCs advocacy initiatives, a week-long campaign on the 18th National Awareness Week Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation from February 8-15, 2014 with the theme: "Proteksyon ng Bata...Tungkulin ng Bawat Isa". Activities to be undertaken are: Fun and Learning Day with Children organized by ECPAT Philippines and Ateneo-TUGON, Policy Forum on Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation in the Cyberspace and Sunset Walk for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation.


For more details, please contact –

Mr. Elino L Bardillon/Ms. Laureen C. Musa

Telephone No. 7811039 local 1005/2003

Last Updated on Wednesday, 05 February 2014 15:19
 
CWC 38th Anniversary PDF Print E-mail
Written by PAIO   
Monday, 09 December 2013 16:54

 

 

38th year Anniversary of the

Council for the Welfare of Children

Congratulations! to the Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC) in celebrating its thirty eight foundation on December 10, 2013. Presidential Decree 603, otherwise known as the Child and Youth Welfare Code created the CWC in 1975 as the focal inter-agency body of the Philippine Government for children.  It is mandated to coordinate the implementation and enforcement of all laws, formulate, monitor and evaluate policies, programs and measures for children.


Led by CWC Executive Director Brenda S. Vigo, the anniversary event will be observed with the celebration of a Mass from the Officiating Priest of Sta. Teresita Parish Church, Quezon City and to be followed by a simple program, and awarding of loyalty service to employees.


For almost four decades upon reaching year 2015, the CWC has been conscientiously advocating for the rights and welfare of children.  Significant milestones that the CWC has been doing are a) Legislative Agenda on Children for the 16th Congress such as Prohibition of Corporal Punishment, Amending the Law on Statutory Rape, Protecting Children Affected by Armed Conflict, and Amending the Local Government Code to ensure adequate funds on programs for children; b)  Strengthening Local Council for the Protection of Children and Barangay Councils for the Protection of Children (in 1974, the organization of BCPC is encouraged as indicated in Article 87 of Presidential Decree 603); c)  the CHILD 21/National Plan of Action for Children; d)  Presidential Award for Child Friendly Municipalities and Cities; e)  Macro Subaybay Bata Monitoring System (SBMS) as an instrument that monitors compliance to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC); and, fNationwide celebration of National Children’s Month (month of October) by virtue of Presidential Proclamation 267.


The above highlighted efforts aimed to achieve Child-Friendly Philippines:  A Caring and Protective Society for, by and with Children.

 

For more details, please contact Ms. Denia S. Gamboa/Ms. Ma. Edna R.L. Estal, CWC Public Affairs and Information Office, Telephone No. 7811039 local 1005/1006.

Last Updated on Monday, 09 December 2013 17:57
 
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