BALON DAGUPAN NEWS
DAGUPAN CITY – To uphold the rights of women and their dignity as human beings, Mayor Belen T. Fernandez has created the city’s Anti-Flesh Trade Task Force (CATT-Force) to prevent the proliferation of activities and practices that are abusive or detrimental to the rights of women.
Under her Executive Order No. 19, series of 2015, Fernandez appointed Leah L. Aquino, City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWD) officer-in-charge, as chairperson of the Task Force, and City Administrator Farah Marie G. Decano as the focal person of the CATT-Force.
The creation of the CATT-Force is provided for under Section 8 of Ordinance No. 1896-2007 otherwise known as “Providing for Supplementary Measures Against Flesh Trade” in consonance with Ordinance No. 1954-2010, otherwise known as “Establishing the Magna Carta of Women in Dagupan City”.
Both ordinances were authored by then City Councilor now City Administrator Decano.
The members of the task force are the Local Council for Women (LCW), City Prosecution Office, Sangguniang Panlungsod Chairs on Committees on Women, Children and Family Affairs Health and Peace and Order; City Health Office (CHO), Public Order and Safety Office (POSO), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG), National Bureau of Investigation (NBI), Philippine National Police (PNP), Department of Education (DepEd), Commission on Higher Education (CHED) and three Women and Children non-government organizations who have proven an unquestionable commitment to the promotion and protection of rights and welfare of women and children.
The CATT-Force shall perform the functions provided for under Section 9 of Ordinance No. 1896-2007 and to promote empowerment of women, eliminate all forms of discriminations against women by providing mechanisms to promote and protect their rights.
The city has allocated P3 million to the CATT-Force to put in place its programs, mechanisms and activities pursuant to Section 13 of the ordinance.
Fernandez signed the Executive Order on August 3.
Fernandez assured that the women victims of the flesh trade once rescued will get a decent job by enrolling them to TESDA’s programs and also of the DOLE.
“Our trust is to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases especially AIDS (Acquired Immunity Disease Syndrome) and at the same time to provide the victims a decent job. In fact, one of them has successfully completed the Alternative Learning System recently and was among those who graduated from the program. There is a need to stop this activity in our city and we will work with the Church and other government agencies, the PNP, DOLE, the judiciary, CHO and CSWD,” said Fernandez.
At the same time, Fernandez congratulated the PNP for raiding a nightclub operating as a massage parlor offering “extra services” on July 30 on Arellano-Bani which resulted in the arrest of the manager and the rescue of four guest relation officers.
The PNP has recommended the closure of the establishment. (CIO)