KORONADAL CITY – The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) called on partner agencies to help enforce the implementation of a law that protects the rights of women and children in Central Mindanao.

DSWD 12 assistant regional director Gemma Rivera said the central office wanted all state offices to take the lead in implementing and enforcing Republic Act No. 9262 or the “Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004”.

Under this Act, violence against women is classified as a public crime and penalizes all forms of abuse and violence within the family and intimate relationships, hence all women should be aware where to report cases of violence committed against them.”

“We recommit ourselves to achieving a better place where women and children enjoys their rights and freedom,” she said.

In Manila, DSWD Officer-In-Charge Emmanuel A. Leyco said based on the preliminary findings of the 2017 National Demographic and Health Survey, “one in four or 26% of ever-married women aged 15-49 has ever experienced physical, sexual or emotional violence by their husband or partner.

One in five or 20% of women has ever experienced emotional violence, 14 percent has ever experienced physical violence, and 5 percent has ever experienced sexual violence by their current or most recent husband or partner.”

“Among the ways to lessen the occurrence of incidents of domestic violence is to focus on the over-all mental, emotional and physical health and well-being of family members. For instance, if the husband does not have any vices, such as drinking and gambling, he will be less prone to abuse his wife and children.  Good health has a positive effect on the family, and the healthier the parents and children are, the better the chances that they will have happier and healthier lives,” OIC Leyco explained.

OIC Leyco added that the Department’s Pantawid Pamilya Program conduct Family Development Sessions which beneficiaries should regularly attend as one of the conditionalities. Among the modules discussed during the FDS are husband-wife relationships and the respective roles and responsibilities of such, as well as responsible parenthood including positive disciplining of children.

“Our beneficiaries relate that the lessons they learn from the modules taught to them during the FDS sessions help them to strengthen their family relationships and they are encouraged to be better parents,” OIC Leyco ended. (DSWD/JBM)