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PIA Press Release

Bacolod to mark Women's Month

by Coun. J. Batapa

Bacolod City (23 February) -- The Sanggunian Panlungsod of Bacolod last week passed a resolution supporting the observance of the International Women's Day on March 8 and the National Women's Month in March.

The resolution was authored by Councilors Jocelle Batapa-Sigue and Celia Matea Flor.

Also enjoined all barangays in to hold activities in their respective communities anchored on the theme: "Babae, Yaman Ka ng Bayan" and to support the activities to be spearheaded by the Bacolod City Gender and Development (GAD) Council, chaired by Batapa-Sigue.

The theme highlights the critical role of women in nation-building and recognizes that women are an important resource who can contribute to the reduction of poverty. Considering the present global financial crisis, it is timely to tap half of the country's resource, the women, and create a gender-responsive environment to encourage and support them to venture into high-value and more meaningful economic activities and enterprise development.

The theme also supports the fulfillment of the country's international treaty obligations, particularly Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), the Millennium Declaration, and International Labour Organizations (ILO) conventions.

The objectives of this year's celebration are to serve as a venue for sharing of inspiring stories of women entrepreneurs, lessons learned and good practices in entrepreneurial activities; and to serve as a channel for the nationwide campaign to promote women's economic empowerment and rights through entrepreneurship.

The National Commission on the Role of the Filipino Women (NCRFW) aims to witness the signing of the Magna Carta of Women by President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as the highlight of the celebration. The Magna Carta of Women aims to respond to the situation and needs of women. One essential feature of the law is that it recognizes women's rights to food and resources to food production, housing, livelihood, credit, capital and technology, education and training, participation and representation, information, social protection, recognition and preservation of cultural identity and integrity, peace and development, protection of girl-children, and protection of senior citizens.

The celebration of the International Women's Day has since stimulated major historical events such as the protests staged between 1909 and 1911 by working women in the United States against low wages, lack of protective legislation and the very poor working conditions to which women workers were subjected during that time.

The demonstrations were an offshoot of the tragic March 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in New York City, which took the lives of more than 140 working girls, mostly Italian and Jewish immigrants.

In Europe, Clara Zetkin and the Socialist Women's International demanded that March 8th be the International Women's Day, celebrated each year to recognize working women around the world.

t was also inspired by the general strike which began the Russian Revolution in St. Petersburg in 1917 when 10, 000 women textile workers demonstrated.

In the Philippines, the passage of various laws during the term of President Corazon, the first Filipino woman president, serves as legal bases for the celebration of the National Women's Day and Month. These include Proclamation No. 224, "Declaring the First Week of March of Every Year as Women's Week and March 8, 1988 and Every Year Thereafter as Women's Rights and International Peace Day" and Proclamation No, 227, "Providing for the observance of the Month of March as 'Women's Role in History Month" and Republic Act No. 6949, "An Act to Declare March Eight of Every Year as a Working Special Holiday to be Known as National Women's Day".

Meanwhile, La Carlota City garnered recognition as the Most Outstanding Health Board in Region 6 during the recent awarding ceremony in Iloilo City with Mayor Demy John Honrado receiving the award.

The health programs of the city are under the direction and supervision of City Health Officer Dr. Erwina Frances Jalandoni. The achievement was made possible by the close linkage of the City Health Office personnel and staff, barangay officials, private medical practitioners in health and projects, the cooperation of the residents and the support of the Sangguniang Panlungsod.

Mayor Hondrado expressed optimism that with the award, delivery of efficient basic health services will continue to be upgraded and innovative. (PIA-LOL) [top]

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