Singson Appeals for Urgent Action from Sanggunians: “DESPITE PROGRESS, CHILDREN ARE DEPRIVED OF BASIC RIGHTS”- UNICEF
Philippine Councilors League National President Luis “Chavit” Singson said, “The councilors can pass ordinances and resolutions to uplift the condition of children- being the most vulnerable and marginalized members in our society”.
On 9 October 2018 at Novotel Araneta Center in Quezon City, United Nations Children’s Fund organized a forum participated by national government agencies like DSWD, NEDA, Galing Pook Foundation, Quezon City Government, Non-Government Organizations, organizations of elected local officials (Leagues) and the media. UNICEF presented the current plight of children in the Philippines. During the said event, Ms. Lotta Sylwander of UNICEF reported the following facts:
- 3 out of 10 Filipino children still live below the poverty line while in ARMM, the statistics is 6.5 out of 10;
- Millions have no access to clean drinking water;
- In the year 2015, only 62% received their immunization and only 18% in ARMM;
- Between 2011 to 2015, there is a 230% increase in HIV cases among Filipino adolescents and teenagers;
- 2 out of 3 children are victims of physical violence at home/school;
- Philippines became a destination listed 1 out of top 10 producing online sexual content using children;
- 1 out of 4 children age 13 to 17 years old are victims of sexual violence and abuse.
Singson, Ilocos Sur Governor for almost thirty years, lauds the current programs of the national government with UNICEF providing its remarkable assistance nevertheless he said, ”The Sanggunian Members can strengthen the current approach being familiar with the condition of children in their respective localities. Just like the senators and congressmen, our prime responsibility is legislation. We can approve policies, projects and appropriate funds to uplift the children’s condition”, he explained.
“The country faces these social challenges. I personally urge my colleagues in PCL to pass ordinances on building a pro-child environment, promoting the needs and rights of children, capacity building of government workers for children and assisting in the massive information dissemination on children’s rights, gender sensitivity and other intervention programs. As the National President, I humbly open our League for recommendations on how we can effectively function on this matter”, Singson concluded.