Press Release
September 6, 2019


Senator Manuel "Lito" Lapid has filed a bill seeking to increase the number of paid leaves afforded to victims of domestic violence.

Under Senate Bill No. 978, Lapid is pushing to expand the number of leaves from 10 to 20 days once the court has already determined that the victim is indeed suffering from domestic abuse.

According to Lapid, the proposed measure aims to empower victims of domestic violence to somehow recover from the trauma of their by helping them put in order their medical, legal and domestic needs.

"Hindi biro ang hirap na pinapasan ng mga kababaihan na nakararanas ng karahasan sa mismong loob ng kanilang mga tahanan dahil bukod sa paglaya mula sa pang-aabuso ng kanilang mga asawa o karelasyon, madami pa silang kinakaharap ng problemang medikal, legal at pinansiyal," Lapid said.

"Ito ang nais nating tuunan ng pansin sa panukalang batas na ito, kung saan mabibigyan sila ng karagdagang leave credits sa kanilang mga trabaho," he added.

The existing Anti-Violence Against Women and their Children (VAWC) Act also known as Republic Act No. 9262 provides 10 days paid leave from work for victims of abuse to give them an opportunity to pursue legal proceedings, take care of their children, attend counseling sessions or even relocate their residence.

However, Lapid said the minimum 10 days of leave would be grossly insufficient considering that legal proceedings would require the victims to go to court once a month, as well as in counseling sessions and therapy.

Upon the submission of a certification from proper authorities--court, medical professional, law enforcement agencies or anti-domestic violence advocacy groups or help desks--and after giving due notice to the employer, the eligible employee can already claim the allowable leaves.

Data from the 2017 National Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) conducted by the Philippine Statistics Authority revealed that domestic violence remains high in the country with one in four married women aged 15 to 49 still experiencing physical, sexual or emotional violence.

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