DOH 7: Violence against women, children remains high

INCIDENTS of violence against Filipino women and children at their homes remain high, according to the Department of Health in Central Visayas (DOH 7).

Latest data showed that 80 percent of Filipino women and children between 13 and 24 years old have experienced some form of violence in their lifetime, Ligaya Moneva, health education and promotion officer of DOH 7, said in a forum on Wednesday, March 8, 2023.

The prevalence of violence against children was estimated to be at 81.5 percent among boys and at 78.4 percent among girls.

As the country celebrates Women’s Month this March, the DOH 7 has urged the public to refrain from committing violence against women and children at home.

In disciplining children at home, Moneva discouraged parents from resorting to corporal punishment, saying that the most effective strategy is for parents and guardians to use positive and nonviolent parenting techniques.

Physically hurting children could lead to an unresolved trauma, which could result in a more complex set of problems when children become adults—drug abuse, risky sexual behavior that may spread contagious infections and teenage pregnancy.

When abused children become parents themselves, they could become violent towards their own children or abuse their partners. Thus, the cycle of violence never ends, Moneva said.

The DOH’s latest handbook on violence against women and children has revealed that authorities had logged high cases of violence against women and children in homes at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, during which the government imposed restrictions on the movement of Filipinos.

It said that 4,260 incidents of violence against women and children were reported by the Philippine National Police between March and June 2020, with 88 percent of those incidents taking place between intimate partners.

Restrictions on movement, lack of communication channels and a lack of knowledge about reporting procedures may be among the contributing factors to the cases, according to the DOH.(KJF)