City enacts Gender and Development Code

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012


MEMBERS of the Tacloban City Council last Wednesday enacted a Gender and Equality Code to promote gender and equality here during the conduct of their 108th regular session.

The GAD Code aims to ensure that both women and men would equally benefit and participate in the development programs and projects of its various departments and ensure the full participation and involvement of both sectors in the development process, which is in pursuant to Republic Act 7192, otherwise known as the “Women in Development and Nation Building Act.”

The code, which was authored by Councilor Jerry Uy, was also enacted to make gender equality the centerpiece and showcase collaborative community efforts and participative undertakings in all phases of development cycle and nation building.

With this code, both men and women are entitled to actively pursue and vigorously implement gender responsive development policy, design and integrate in the plans specific gender support systems, taking into consideration the universal right to economic survival, political participation, self-determination and personal empowerment.

RA 7192 mandates that all City Government departments, offices and instrumentalities shall ensure that all sexes shall benefit equally and participate directly in the development programs and projects of said departments and agencies, specifically those funded under official foreign development assistance, to ensure the full participation and involvement of women in the development process.

Article 2 of said ordinance required that all City Government project proposals shall ascertain the inclusion of gender responsive indicators and guidelines while equally pursuing and locating the root gender inequality, pursuant to the United Nations Declarations and Conventions to which the Philippine government is a signatory.

The City Government of Tacloban, upon enacting this code, adopts and guarantees respect and protection of the universal rights relating to gender equality as may be defined in the United Nations declaration.

Likewise, the City Government adopts as part of this code, all national laws that were enacted with the end in view of promoting gender equality.

“The City Government shall also promote gender sensitive working environment in all government offices. Any act of gender discrimination in workplaces is hereby prohibited. The designation, selection or determination of job assignments in workplaces shall not be equated with sex but rather on qualitative criteria. Likewise, no worker shall be deprived of job training and promotion opportunities on account of his gender, sex, ethnicity, creed, religion or civil status.”

Councilor Uy said that in order to carry out the general objectives of this code, GAD council must be created.

“The GAD council must be composed of city mayor as the chairman; vice mayor as vice chairman; city population office as secretariat and focal point; representatives from City Planning and Development Office, City Health Office, City Social Welfare and Development Office, Human Resource and Management Office, City Budget Office, City Engineer’s Office, City Environment and Natural Resources Officer, City Police, Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP) chairman of committee on women and family relations, president of the Liga ng mga Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Federation, and SP secretary,” Uy said.

Uy said the council members are obliged to meet quarterly. “The GAD council shall ensure the promotion of gender equality in all facets of community activities and local governance and is primarily responsible for ensuring the sustained implementation of the City GAD Code.”

Uy added that the City Government shall hold an annual Gender and Development Women’s Congress. “The annual women’s congress is a public forum that will be organized to discuss on current situation of women in Tacloban City; and women’s issues and concerns on how these can be addressed. The summit shall come up with priority issues with their respective action plans to be disseminated and proposed for adoption by the City Government and barangay councils.” (Leyte Samar Daily Express)

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