By Michael L. Tan
Yesterday (November 20) marked the 25th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), an international human rights treaty that discusses children’s rights in four areas: the right to survival, the right to develop to the fullest, the right to protection from harmful influences, abuse and exploitation, and the right to participate fully in family, cultural and social life.
By Lorraine Mae C. Nevado
Every sound has an effect on someone, just like what I’m hearing every day outside our house—children laughing, their loud footsteps, one calling the other when it’s time to play. I’m annoyed by it.
Sen. Grace Poe, in her privilege speech before the Senate, was reported to have mentioned the Food and Agriculture Organization’s (FAO) estimate of 15 million malnourished children in the Philippines (“15M PH kids hungry—Poe,” Front Page, 10/28/14).
The start of the year was marked by a horrendous report. In the isolated village of Ibabao in Cebu a child pornography ring was operating, with parents roping their own children into the sordid business. Inside their homes, parents were directing their children—and even their neighbors’—in sex acts recorded by webcam for sale on the Internet to foreign pedophiles. To keep the ring constantly running, the adults locked the children in. But a series of raids disrupted the operation; a number of adults were arrested and the children were rescued, aged 3, 9 and 11.
Despite the fact that Filipinos traditionally highly treasure children in their midst, sexual abuse and exploitation of children tragically remain common in Philippine society. Adding to this poignant irony is that even as the clamor for greater vigilance against child abuse is spreading worldwide, incidents of rape and murder of children in both urban and rural settings in our country continue to be reported with seeming regularity, many of them perpetrated by those who are supposed to care for them.