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CHR: Protect, educate children



The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) called on the Department of Education (DepEd) and schools to continue to ramp up the efforts of Child Protection Committees (CPC) tasked to identify cases of child abuse in the country.

CHR spokesperson Jacqueline Ann de Guia made the call as the CHR joined the international community in commemoration of the International Day of Education yesterday.

De Guia said the third International Day of Education comes in the wake of a pandemic that has left an unprecedented number of individuals without access to education, as well as the widespread interruption of literacy and learning programs that has affected the lives of 1.6 billion students in all over the world.

She said among those affected are over 28 million Filipino learners across academic levels who have to stay at home and comply with the health quarantine measures.

Learning at risk
“As the pandemic worsens with the detection of new strains, forcing the continued delay of the resumption of physical classes. Social, economic, and digital inequalities continue to endanger this generation of students the opportunity of education which we know to be crucial for social mobilization and cohesion,” De Guia said in a statement.

De Guia said even more concerning are the alleged reports of a “Christmas sale” of sensual photos and videos sold by students on social media sites for as little as P150 to help raise funds for distance learning-related expenses.

She said the worrying report follows the increasing trend of online sexual exploitation of children (OSEC), which the Department of Justice (DoJ) has found to have spiked by over 260 percent during the CoVid-19 lockdown and the Anti-Money Laundering Council’s findings on the doubling of suspicious transactions involving child pornography from the P65.8 million booked in 2019 to transactions worth P113.1 million reported in the first half of last year.