HERE in the nation’s capital, if you whistle, curse, humiliate or ridicule a woman in public anywhere in the city by calling her “p*ta”, “peste” or “pokpok,” will surely land you in jail.
Manila Mayor Isko Moreno issued this warning after he signed into law Ordinance 8681, which prohibits and classifies such acts as a form of sexual harassment, along with acts like repeatedly asking for dates despite verbal rejections, making offensive hand gestures or persistently telling green jokes to someone who finds it offensive or humiliating.
The “Gender and Development Code of the City of Manila” or the “GAD Code”, was personally brought for signature to Moreno by Vice Mayor and Council Presiding Officer Honey Lacuna, majority floor leader Atty. Joel Chua and author Krystle Bacani.
Moreno stressed that the ordinance which provides protection to all aspects of rights of women both young and old, is part of the efforts of the city of Manila to be the best gender-responsive local government unit in the country.
Before this, Moreno also signed into law an ordinance promoting the welfare and protection of lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgenders, queers and intersex (LGBTQI) community members in the city.
“Women and other genders in the society shall be recognized as full and equal partners of men in development and nation-building and men shall share equally with all forms of productive and reproductive activities,” the mayor said.
The ordinance mandates the city government to promote gender balance or equal proportion of qualified women and men for opportunity to ensure key positions at all of local government, whether elective or appointive.
Other than the definition provided by R.A. 7877, the following also constitute sexual harassment under the ordinance: taunting a person with constant talk about sex and sexual innuendoes; displaying offensive or lewd pictures and publication in a workplace; interrogating someone about sexual activities or private life; during interviews for employment, scholarship grant or any lawful activity applied for; touching, pinching or brushing up against someone’s body unnecessarily or deliberately; kissing or embracing someone against her will; requesting sexual favors in exchange for a good grade, obtaining a good job or promotion.; unnecessary acts during physical examinations; requiring women to wear suggestive or provocative attire during interviews such as job hiring promotion, admission; and any expression of gender bias against a person with the intention to embarrass, humiliate, stigmatize. ANDI GARCIA
Photo: Outrage Magazine