A child rights group on Monday once again urged the local government units (LGUs) to ensure that the rights of the youth are protected with Metro Manila and other nearby provinces now under the Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ).
Save the Children Philippines (SCP) expressed concern that children and youth “may once again be at the receiving end” of the implementation of the MECQ in the National Capital Region (NCR) as well as in the provinces of Laguna, Cavite, and Bulacan beginning August 4.
SCP noted that in the last four months, the execution of stricter rules on community quarantine by LGUs have led to “reports of untoward incidences of abuse, discrimination, and violence against children.”
Given this, SCP Chief Executive Officer Atty. Alberto Muyot, called on LGU officials to adhere to the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) guidelines issued on June 23, 2020 to treat children humanely in violation of curfew, and quarantine rules.
Based on the DILG guidelines, barangay leaders and law enforcement officers should protect children and youth who allegedly violated curfew and quarantine rules by turning them over to their parents, guardians, or social welfare office, and observe rules that do not harm and threaten children.
Muyot, a former Undersecretary of the Department of Education (DepEd), expressed support for reimposition of the MECQ.
“We believe the latest decision to impose stricter quarantine measures would help protect children and their families from infection,” said Muyot. “[But] we also urge our LGU officials to continuously respect and uphold the rights of children, treat them with dignity, and protect them from violence.”