3 things to remember to prevent violence against women

On March 26, 2018, I graced the Culmination of Women’s Month Celebration at the Cordillera Administrative Region Training Center, Teachers Camp, Baguio City.  The occasion was attended by uniformed trainees of the Philippine National Police.

No automatic alt text available.
An image of the token from Philippine Public Safety College. 

In the said event, I shared three things that could save a woman from being abused.  Below is an excerpt of the message delivered:

xxx

There are only three things that I would like to share to you this morning, brave men and women.  And to make it easy for us to remember, let us use the acronym: S-P-O

What does SPO stand for?

1) “S” – Speak up.

Maya Angelou, an American author and civil activist, said:

Each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it, she stands up for all women.

Resulta ng larawan para sa maya angelou
Maya Angelou, photo taken from https://www.biography.com/people/maya-angelou-9185388

Ladies, do not be afraid to speak up.

Every day in our office, we receive complaints about women being battered physically and emotionally, women not receiving support from their husbands, women being raped and abused.  They come to our office fearful because of their experience, but behind that fear I actually see – COURAGE.

I see courage because even in the midst of a traumatic situation, they were able to carry themselves out of the room, where they were battered and abused, to go to the authorities, to the police station, to our office.

They may look very afraid, but friends, there are “others” who are in worse situations.  Who are these “others”? They are women who could not speak up, women who are still inside the four corners of their room afraid of telling someone that they are being abused.  They are the ones whom we need to reach now.  I won’t ask you to raise your hands but it is possible that some of you are here.

Do not be afraid to speak up.

2) “P” – Promote.

During your stay here as a trainee, I believe you learned about laws protecting women.

You are not learning that for nothing.  Now that you are aware of these laws, you need to use them promote the rights of women, you need to advocate for them.

Promote. Inform your neighbors and the women around you that we have these services so that they will know where to go.

3) “O” – Offer.

Offer help. Since you are empowered, through your knowledge and your trainings, when you see a woman in need of assistance. You-OFFER-help.

Violence against women is not just a domestic problem but a social and community concern.

When you see someone being abused, you offer to help that woman, you encourage her to report to the authorities.

So now, what does SPO stand for?

Speak up, Promote, and Offer.

Let me just read to you a very powerful literature that I read:

I GOT FLOWERS TODAY
by Paulette Kelly

I GOT FLOWERS TODAY
IT WASN’T MY BIRTHDAY OR ANY OTHER DAY.
WE HAD OUR FIRST ARGUMENT LAST NIGHT
AND HE SAID A LOT OF CRUEL THINGS THAT REALLY HURT ME
I KNOW HE IS SORRY AND DIDN’T MEAN THE THINGS HE SAID
BECAUSE HE SENT ME FLOWERS TODAY.
 

Resulta ng larawan para sa flowers
Photo grabbed from https://www.fromyouflowers.com/products/youre_in_my_heart_3.htm

I GOT FLOWERS TODAY
IT WASN’T OUR ANNIVERSARY OR ANY OTHER SPECIAL DAY
LAST NIGHT HE THREW ME INTO THE WALL AND STARTED TO CHOKE ME
IT SEEMED LIKE A NIGHTMARE I COULDN’T BELIEVE IT WAS REAL
I WOKE UP THIS MORNING SORE AND BRUISED ALL OVER
I KNOW HE MUST BE SORRY…BECAUSE HE SENT ME FLOWERS TODAY.

Resulta ng larawan para sa flowers
Photo grabbed from: https://www.flowersnfruits.com

I GOT FLOWERS TODAY.  TODAY WAS A VERY SPECIAL DAY.  LAST NIGHT, HE FINALLY KILLED ME.
HE BEAT ME TO DEATH.
IF ONLY I HAVE GATHERED ENOUGH COURAGE AND STRENGTH TO LEAVE HIM.

I WOULD NOT HAVE GOTTEN FLOWERS TODAY.

Resulta ng larawan para sa funeral flowers
Photo grabbed from https://www.italflorist.com/flowers/funeral-casket-sprays/all-white-flowers

So not only to the women, I will say this to everyone, do not hesitate to stand up for women’s rights, because by doing so, you are not only standing up for yourself but also for your mother, for your sister, for your wife, for your grandmother, for humanity…

xxx

It was quite an unforgettable experience for me seeing our men and women in uniform nodding and agreeing that violence against women should not be tolerated at all. Indeed, change has come for our women and we are making this change work for each of them.

For laws related to the Magna Carta of Women, you can browse on the following:

  1. R.A. 8353 (Anti-Rape Law of 1997)
  2. R.A. 9208 (Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act of 2003)
  3. R.A. 9262 (Anti-Violence Against Women and Their Children Act of 2004)
  4. R.A. 7877 (Anti-Sexual Harassment Act of 1995)
  5. R.A. 8972 (Solo Parent’s Welfare Act of 2000)

JUST SAYING: FAILURE TO PRESENT AN AUTHORIZED BANK REP IN A BP 22 CASE SHOULD LEAD TO ACQUITTAL

Help me weigh in on this…

In a BP 22 case, if the prosecution fails to present an authorized bank representative to testify that the checks were presented to the bank and that the same were subsequently dishonored, I am of a view that this should lead to the acquittal of the accused.

Why?

The essential elements of the offense of violation of BP 22 are the following:

(1) The making, drawing, and issuance of any check to apply for account or for value;

(2) The knowledge of the maker, drawer, or issuer that at the time of issue there were no sufficient funds in or credit with the drawee bank for the payment of such check in full upon its presentment; and

(3) The dishonor of the check by the drawee bank for insufficiency of funds or credit or the dishonor for the same reason had not the drawer, without any valid cause, ordered the drawee bank to stop payment (Resterio v. People, G.R. No. 177438, September 24, 2012, 681 SCRA 592, 596-597).

Who dishonors the checks?  It is the bank, right?

Without the bank representative being presented as a prosecution witness, the third element cannot be established.

I just can imagine a trigger happy complainant conveniently having a stamp made along Recto and marks/stamps each check issued to him as dishonored without actually presenting the said checks in the bank and later uses these as  evidence to file a case for BP 22.  Isn’t that scary?

Thus, I am advocating that if the prosecution fails to present an authorized bank representative to testify on the dishonor of the check, the word ACQUITTAL should be spelled correctly.

What do you think?

Armed Forces of the Philippines can offer a JOB OPPORTUNITY to the NEW NURSES!

Out of the 17,891 examinees, only 9,707 made the cut in the latest Nursing Board Exam given nationwide last May 2015. That would mean an additional 9,707 battling for employment as a registered nurse.

INSPIRING, A JEEPNEY DRIVER’S DAUGHTER LANDED 2ND PLACE

Charlyn Villa, Top 2, Nursing Board Exam, May 2015.
Charlyn Villa, Top 2, Nursing Board Exam, May 2015.

Charlyn Montebon Villa, daughter of a jeepney driver and a graduate of Riverside College in Bacolod landed second in the recently conducted nursing licensure examination. Poverty could have been an obstacle for her to reach her goal but according to her, she wanted to be a nurse so bad.

Charlyn’s success is one good example of why we need to be persistent on chasing our dreams. “We didn’t have money”, she recalled in an interview but obviously this did not deter her to accomplish what she’s so far accomplished.

It is not surprising that due to her performance in the board exam, Charlyn already have job offerings and most likely those who landed the top 10 spot will also share the same fate.

KASAMBAHAY, ENTITLED BA SA 13TH MONTH PAY?

 WHERE WILL THE OTHERS GO?

The question that I have in mind now is– will the Philippine government be able to provide jobs for the other 9,697 newly registered nurses? With the current state that we are in, the answer is obvious. We can expect these registered nurses lining up to agencies and training centers that would enable them to obtain employment abroad. We will also see an army of nurses volunteering to hospitals just to gain experience, again, as a requirement for a nursing job abroad. Of course no one should blame them for this diaspora especially if they have families to support and our very own country couldn’t provide for employment.

WHY DID THEY TAKE UP NURSING IN THE FIRST PLACE?

In one of the youth seminars that we have organized several years back, I was able to speak to a college nursing student who revealed that he was only taking up the course because he was forced to do so by his parents. He was in a state of frustration because he didn’t know where his efforts in school were leading him.  Just a month ago, I saw this guy in a police uniform. I failed to ask though if he finished nursing or shifted to another course for him to become the police officer that he is now.

In the Philippines, opportunities may be scarce for this group of professionals but I know of people who did not allow this nursing employment drought to get to them and so they became entrepreneurs, teachers, policemen, lawyers and doctors.

AN OPPORTUNITY FOR NURSES!

What prompted me to actually write this article is when I learned from a friend that there is actually a solution to this lack of employment for nurses – The Armed Forces of the Philippines NURSE CORPS.

AFP NURSE CORPS has been in existence for around 75 years now. Accordingly, this group is inspired by Melchora Aquino who, during the revolution, fed, gave medical attention to and encouraged the revolutionaries with motherly advice and prayers.

In a video I saw that was dedicated to the 75th anniversary of AFP NURSE CORPS,  BGEN Irma Almoneda NC (GSC), The Chief Nurse, AFP defined the nurse corps by saying – “ang Nurse Corps ay kaagapay sa pagtutupad ng pangkalahatang pangangalaga ng kalusugan ng mga kasundaluhan…”  My take is they won’t really go to war like the soldiers but they will be in charge of taking care of the wounded in case there is war.  In the absence of war, they are the once conducting activities that would ensure that our soldiers and their beneficiaries are maintaining good health.

Cor. Irma Almoneda NC (GSC), The Chief Nurse, AFP.
BGEN Irma Almoneda NC (GSC), The Chief Nurse, AFP.
bright hope poster

How then can a nurse join the AFP NURSE CORPS? Here are the requirements.REQUIREMENTS FOR COMMISSION-SHIP IN THE NURSE CORPS

FOR SINGLES:

  1. Must be a natural born Filipino citizen
  2. Must have a pleasing personality and good moral character
  3. Registered nurse with a Board rating of 80% or above. Below 80% may be admitted, but should pass a qualifying examination to be conducted by the Office of the Chief Nurse, AFP
  4. Male and female applicants must be single or never been married. For female applicants, must not be positively found to have given birth to a living stillborn child.
  5. Not more than 32 years old at the time of commission
  6. Must satisfy the following height requirements:

Female – at least 5′ 2″

Male – at least 5′ 4″

  1. Must be mentally and physically fit for military service and cleared by the appropriate security agencies.

IF MARRIED:

  1. First priority shall be given to Enlisted Personnel who are registered nurses by profession with at least three (3) years of active military service and have successfully completed the Clinical Nursing Program for EP Nurses being conducted by the Office of The Chief Nurse, AFP.
  2. Second priority shall be given to other applicants who have satisfied the additional following additional requirements:

a.) With at least three (3) years of current and continuous professional experience in hospital/clinic settings and or as member of a faculty of a recognized School of Nursing.

b.) Preferably with Master in Nursing or at least nine (9) units of post graduate studies leading to Master in Nursing.

If you meet any of the above requirements, you should also prepare the following documents:

  • Resume with 2×2 Picture;
  • College Diploma;
  • Transcript of Records;
  • Certificate of Board Rating.

Submit the above documents to the Office of the Chief Nurse at the Heneral Valdez Building at Camp Emilio Aguinaldo, Quezon City for initial evaluation.

If you find this article helpful, please share it to your friends.

DISCLAIMER:  The article is written for the purpose of informing the readers that there is a Department in the AFP called AFP Nurse Corps and does not in any way guarantee vacancies in the AFP NURSE CORPS. Please contact the AFP for current vacancies.

CLICK THIS LINK FOR OTHER JOB VACANCIES.