The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) condemned the harassment and molestation of a 17-year-old girl by an alleged driver of a Transportation Network Vehicle Services (TNVS) last Jan. 2.
In a statement, the CHR vowed to monitor and pursue the case against the arrested driver “to ascertain justice for the victim.”
It said that based on reports, the male driver introduced himself to the victim as a member of the ride-hailing app vehicle service, but eventually convinced the victim to avail herself of the metered fare instead.
During the trip from Pasay City to Quezon City, the victim said she was verbally harassed and touched by the driver.
The CHR lauded the bravery of the girl for calling the attention of nearby police officers despite her shock. Her immediate action prompted law officers to conduct a swift entrapment operation that led to the arrest of the perpetrator, it said.
“CHR, as the country’s Gender Ombud, condemns this incident and reminds everyone that such cases of gender-based violence—especially against minors—should not be commonplace. We underscore the existence of Republic Act (RA) No. 11313 or the Safe Spaces Act (Bawal Bastos Law) which provides protective measures and prescribes corresponding penalties to gender-based sexual harassment such as catcalling; molestation; cyber harassment; transphobic, homophobic and sexist slurs; and sexual violence,” it said.
It pointed out that Section 15, Article III of RA 11313 imposes a higher penalty if the act takes place in common carriers like TNVS and if the offended party is a minor.
“Once again, CHR asserts that all forms of gender-based violence should not be tolerated. Let us all remain vigilant against instances that attempt or threaten to normalize these unwanted and uninvited acts. We urge everyone to report cases similar to the incident, or any sexual or gender-based violence, in platforms such as the CHR’s E-Report sa Gender Ombud (bit.ly/ReportBawalBastos),” it said.
TAGS: #CHR #Bawal Bastos Law