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Forum held to finalize Safe Spaces Act’s IRR

A public consultation was held yesterday for the implementing rules and regulations of Republic Act No. 11313 or the Safe Spaces Act.

The consultation was organized by the Philippine Commission on Women and Plan International Philippines, which advances children’s rights and equality for girls.

“This occasion is important, because the implementing rules and regulations of the Safe Spaces Act is still being developed. In that sense having public consultation while developing IRR of our law is a precedent, this does not happen always,” Elizabeth Angsioco, the national chair of the Democratic Socialist Women of the Philippines said as she graced the event on Tuesday at the Ateneo de Davao University.

The Safe Spaces Act was signed into law on April 17, 2019 and became effective on Aug. 3 this year.

“Any forms of catcalling or the unwanted remarks directed towards a person commonly done in the form of wolf-whistling and misogynistic, transphobic, homophobic and sexist slurs is a crime. Not only that the females can experience this, even males, and other genders such as the trans-people,” she said.

She also said that the public consultation is vital so stakeholders can offer suggestions to fine-tune the law. The event also aims to inform and further develop the law with the help of the consultants present in the consultation.

“What we expect from you is to really look at the draft (of the) IRR, and when you feel there is lacking or there is a wrong word or even the pronunciation, you are allowed to mention it because that spells a lot. These things, little may we think it is, in the law it is somehow meaningful,” she said.

The fourth of the eight countrywide consultations was attended by representatives from various sectors and stakeholders, including the local government unit, which also play an important part in developing the IRR, women’s organizations, and civil society.

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