BAGUIO CITY – Some seven hundred twelve cases of violence against women and children committed in the different parts of the Cordillera were recorded by the Regional Committee Against Trafficking, Child Pornography and Violence Against Women and Children for the first eight months of the year.
Bernardo T. Cadaon, a member of the regional committee secretariat, claimed that of the recorded cases, 424 are said to be violence against women cases while 298 are violence against children cases.
“We attribute the timely reporting of violence against women and children cases by the victims themselves to their awareness on existing laws, rules and regulations that govern their overall protection and their confidence to the ability of concerned government agencies to guarantee their being spared from further violence,” Cadaon stressed.
Based on the data obtained from the regional secretariat on violence against women, Baguio City topped the list with the most number of incidents at 210 followed by Benguet with 96 cases, Ifugao – 37, cases Abra – 33 cases, Kalinga – 20 cases, Apayao 16 cases and Mountain Province – 12 cases.
In terms of violence against children, Baguio City still emerged as the area with the highest number of incidents at 106 cases followed by Benguet with 55 cases, Ifugao – 42 cases, Abra and Kalinga with 30 cases each, Mountain Province – 22 cases and Abra – 13 cases.
Cadaon explained that most of the violence against women and children cases are physical abuse, psychological abuse and sexual abuse.
However, he admitted that most of the reported cases are settled because of the intervention of influential family members aside from the fact that those being charged are the bread winners of their families, thus, the need for them to free their family member for them to survive.
According to him, the data on violence against women and children came from the Philippine National Police (PNP), the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the local governments which are at the forefront in the documentation of the occurrence of the said incidents within their areas of jurisdiction.
The social welfare official claimed that victims of violence against women and children who want to seek temporary shelter with the different private and public institutions providing shelter for said individuals are always provided the assistance for them to avail of the said services while their cases are being worked out with the concerned government agencies that have jurisdiction on their cases.
He pointed out that the passage of Republic Act (RA) 9262 or the Anti-Violence Against Women and Children Act is successful because the members of the previously abused sector were empowered to ventilate their problems with concerned government agencies that have resulted to the filing of appropriate charges against their abusers and their conviction in certain instances by the courts where the said abuse cases were filed.
Cadaon pointed out that the data on violence against women and children had been erratic through the years but there had been a significant increase in reported cases compared to the years when the law on VAWC has not yet been in place. By HENT