MABALACAT City Mayor Cris Garbo said poverty is the root cause of violence against women and children.
The mayor stressed this during the observance of the International Day To End Violence Against Women and Campaign Against Gender-Based Violence on Monday, November 25.
“These things happen due to poverty, those who have less in life especially the children fall victims of sexual abuse and prostitution,” Garbo said in Kapampangan.
Few years ago, students were arrested for alleged prostitution, he added.
“People with hungry stomach will indulge in illegal activities, they are forced to these things maybe because of needs.”
During Monday’s flag raising ceremony at the city hall, the mayor asked local government employees to help indigent people and be vigilant to stop violence, incest and other evil acts.
“In connection with this, you [government employees] working as job order, casual and permanent, you are blessed by God. So if you people suffering from poverty, you have to share. It may not be financial but you may report to us any incidents of abuse against women and children,” Garbo said.
The local chief executive stressed that it is the obligation of every [government] employee to protect women especially those who are abused.
Government employees are role models and partners of local officials especially on the enforcement of the law.
The city government joined the observance of the 18-day campaign to end violence against women.
Garbo also said that love and respect are the strength of a married couple who are partners in life and they should always support each other to make a happy and united family, according to Garbo.