DSWD commits serious effort vs child pornography

Published January 12, 2021, 11:07 PM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) has assured the public that it maintains its close partnership with the Philippine National Police (PNP) and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to run after the perpetrators of child pornography.

The DSWD as chair of the Inter-Agency Council Against Child Pornography (IACACP) made the assurance after the Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) released a report showing that from January to June 2020, some P113.1 million worth of suspicious transactions related to child pornography were recorded.

“As chair of the IACACP and the lead agency in the social protection of vulnerable sectors, the DSWD is closely working with the Philippine National Police (PNP) and National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) to track and apprehend the perpetrators of child pornography and rescue the victims,” it said in a statement. 

Republic Act No. 9775, otherwise known as the Anti-Child Pornography Act of 2009 mandates the IACACP  to guarantee the protection of every child from all forms of neglect, cruelty, and other conditions prejudicial to his or her development.

“DSWD is also working with the local government units (LGUs), especially with the various Local Council for the Protection of Children (LCPC) around the country, to increase awareness, prevention, and early detection of cases,” it said.

According to the DSWD, rescued victims are placed under its custody and provided with psychosocial interventions.

The Department said it is committed to “strengthen its programs and services for victims of child pornography and their families and to advocate for stronger policies that would ensure the protection of children from various forms of sexual exploitation.”

In its “Child Pornography in the Philippines” bulletin, the AMLC noted that the volume of suspicious transaction reports (STRs) reached 27,217 from January to June in 2020, which is more than twice the 10,627 STRs reported in the entire 2019.

The DSWD noted that over the years, it has intensified its coordination with IACACP member-agencies to address the problem of child pornography. 

It said a National Response Plan for Online Sexual Abuse and Exploitation of Children 2016-2020 was formulated to serve as a guide for government agencies, LGUs, civil society organizations, private sectors and other stakeholders to address the gaps in prevention, responses, capacity building, policies and child protection mechanisms.

The DSWD also underscored the need to closely monitor the safety of children even inside their homes, since they cannot go out to report abuses being committed against them.

It advised the public to “be on the alert and immediately report to the authorities all forms of abuses against children.”

The public has been encouraged to report to the authorities all forms of abuses against children through the following hotlines:

DSWD Recovery and Reintegration Program for Trafficked Persons (RRPTP) Hotline (02) 8931-9141;
Text DSWD <space> blockchildporn<space> URL address and send to 2327or Text blockchildporn <space> URL address and send to 0918-9122813;
Commission on Filipino Overseas TIP Hotline 1343
PNP Patrol 911
PNP Women and Children Protection Center: 0919 777 7377
PNP Anti Cybercrime Group: Tel. No. (02) 723-0401 local 5354 Fax No. (02) 414-1560, 0926-084-3792
NBI: (02) 523-8231 to 38 local 3454 to 3455
DOJ-Office of Cybercrime Tel. NO.(02) 524-82-16.

“A coordinated global and national response is needed in addressing the problem of child pornography, especially during this pandemic when more people, including children, are spending longer hours online,” the DSWD said.