Give dignity kits to Marawi women, senator tells gov't
MANILA, Philippines – Senator Juan Edgardo Angara on Saturday, July 15, urged the government to distribute dignity kits for women displaced by the ongoing clashes between government troops and local terrorists in Marawi City.
Angara called for the implementation of a 2016 health department order that detailed the national policy on a minimum initial service package (MISP) for sexual and reproductive health in health-related emergencies and disasters.
The MISP, as provided for in the Magna Carta of Women and the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Law, "shall become part of the DOH response to crises and emergencies," a Department of Health administrative order read.
The dignity kit, which is part of the MISP, includes supplies and materials for distribution to women of reproductive age affected by disaster situations. Each kit includes the following:
- bath soap
- laundry soap
- panties (S,M,L)
- brassiere (S,M,L)
- nail cutter (medium)
- face towel
- bath towel
- pail 24 liters with cover
- chamber pot with cover
- cotton balls
- shampoo, 12 sachets
- tissue roll
- solar lamp with charger
- sanitary napkin (8 pcs/pack)
Additional contents for pregnant women:
- maternity Pads (3 packs)
- baby rubber mat (1 pc)
- baby clothes (3 sets)
- baby mittens and socks (3 sets) and 1 bonnet
- baby blanket (1 pc)
Based on the order, the DOH's Health Emergency Management Bureau is in charge of deploying dignity kits and supplies during the emergency. It also serves as the "provider of last resort."
"Even during normal times, nursing mothers, babies, pregnant women must have the best of care. In wartime, their plight is exacerbated when they're uprooted from their homes. The worse the situation is, the more responsive the government's help must become," Angara said in a statement Saturday.
Citing the United Nations Population Fund, Angara said over 18,000 women are "gravely affected" by the Marawi conflict. Of this number, 11,500 are pregnant while over 7,000 are mothers who recently gave birth.
The distribution of dignity kits, according to Angara, shows a disaster aid that adopts a "women and children first policy."
"Being born in evacuation centers sets back a child's development during the crucial first 1,000 days," he added.
The clashes in Marawi City, which had prompted President Rodrigo Duterte to declare martial law in the entire Mindanao, is already on its 8th week.
As government plans to start the early stage of the city's rehabilitation, a House lawmaker meanwhile filed a bill seeking to rebuild and modernize one of the high school's in the city, the Marawi City National High School (NHS).
With House Bill 5963, AANGAT TAYO Representative Neil Abayon wants to infuse P200 million to the high school which is expected to serve at least 2,000 students once classes resume in the city.
The quick resumption of classes, Abayon said, will enhance the "normalization of life" in Marawi City.
"Marawi City NHS must be secured as a center of peace and learning for the benefit of residents, particularly the youth, of Marawi City and its surrounding municipalities," a statement from Abayon's office said. – Rappler.com
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