BRIDGE Update: The Philippines. Issue No. 94, September 2012

BRIDGE Update: The Philippines. Issue No. 94, September 2012

Publisher:
Publication Date: Sep 2012
BRIDGE Update: The Philippines Issue No. 94, September 2012

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In This Issue:
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I. BRIDGE updates: recent activities and publications
a. BRIDGE online survey
b. New films: perceptions of men working for gender equality and social justice
c. Gender and social movements: help us with monitoring and evaluation

II. Upcoming events, new resources and other news
a. Gender Action's Global Gender IFI Watcher Network
b. ‘Topic guide on gender’, Governance and Social Development Resource Centre (GSDRC)
c. ‘Gender equality and the post-2015 framework’, Gender and Development Network
d. ‘Innovative approaches to gender and food security’, IDS Knowledge Services
e. UN Women Executive Director’s Global Civil Society Advisory Group
f. Fifth World Conference on Women

III. Quick Guide: global resources gender in the Philippines

I. BRIDGE updates: recent activities and publications
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a. Take part in our online survey
There’s still time for you to fill in our short online survey. Your thoughts and views about BRIDGE products and services will help us plan our work for the future, so if you have ten minutes to spare, please visit the survey: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/JDYT5XF

b. New film interviews: perspectives of men working for gender equality
As part of our exciting gender and social movements Cutting Edge programme, BRIDGE International Advisory Committee member Marcos Nascimento conducted interviews with men gathered at the recent World Aids Conference, who are working for gender equality and social justice. Among those interviewed was Philip Otieno of Men for Gender Equality Now in Kenya, Abhijit Das from the Centre for Health and Social Justice in India, and Dean Peacock of the Sonke Gender Justice Network in South Africa. You can watch the videos here: http://www.youtube.com/user/BRIDGEsocialmovement

c. Gender and social movements: help us with monitoring and evaluation
While changes in the way social movements think about and integrate gender equality in their work are long term, and difficult to measure, we’d like to try and capture some of the impacts that our BRIDGE gender and social movement programme has. To help us with this, we are bringing together a small group of people who will complete an online perceptions survey in 2012, 13 and 14. The survey is designed to collect individual experiences and perceptions about gender and social movements. Participants are not expected to speak for a whole movement, organisation or group, but rather to answer questions based on their own experiences, reflections, ideas and feelings. We have some gaps in the group membership that we’d like to fill – men and participants in Africa are underrepresented. If you fall into either of these categories, are involved in or interested in social movements in your region (either women’s and gender justice movements or other social justice movements), and would like to be part of the survey group, please email Jenny Birchall j.birchall@ids.ac.uk

II. Upcoming events, new resources and other news:
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a. Gender Action's Global Gender IFI Watcher Network
http://www.genderaction.org/index.html
Civil society groups are invited to join this new global network of ‘Gender IFI Watchers’ to help hold International Financial Institutions (IFIs) accountable for their negative gender impacts. Launched at the 2012 AWID Forum by Gender Action, this network also enables activists to collectively ensure positive gender outcomes. As a Gender IFI Watcher, you will learn how to locate vital information about IFI projects in your country, conduct gender analyses of IFI projects, collaborate with Gender Action and other network members in your region and around the world, and more.

b. ‘Topic guide on gender’, Governance and Social Development Resource Centre (GSDRC), 2012
http://www.gsdrc.org/go/topic-guides/gender&utm_source=bulletin&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=gsdrc
This new 129-page topic guide on gender introduces some of the best recent literature on a wide range of gender issues related to development and humanitarian work. The consideration of 'gender' involves examining how social norms and power structures affect the lives of, and opportunities available to, different groups of men and women, boys and girls. Funded by AusAID, the guide highlights major critical debates, practical guidance, lessons learned and case studies.

c. ‘Gender equality and the post-2015 framework’, Gender and Development Network, 2012
http://www.bridge.ids.ac.uk/go/home&id=62365&type=Document&langid=1
As the 2015 deadline for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) approaches, debate has begun on what should follow. This paper contains the recommendations of the Gender and Development Network (GADN). These recommendations are intended to complement the various proposals for the currently debated post-2015 development framework.

d. ‘Innovative approaches to gender and food security’, IDS Knowledge Services, insights, issue 82, 2012
http://www.bridge.ids.ac.uk/go/home&id=59402&type=Document&langid=1
This issue of insights shows how development policy and practice can improve food security while supporting women’s empowerment. Whilst there is no one-size-fits-all approach, this document shows that by empowering women, and transforming gender norms and inequalities within households and communities, food security programmes are more effective.

e. UN Women Executive Director’s Global Civil Society Advisory Group
http://www.unwomen.org/2012/05/un-women-announces-members-of-global-civil-society-advisory-group/
The establishment of UN Women Civil Society Advisory Groups (at the global, regional and national levels) was announced earlier this year at the 56th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). The Global Group, appointed by the UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet, is based on wide consultation with civil society networks and nominations from civil society organisations.

f. Fifth World Conference on Women
http://www.awid.org/News-Analysis/Fifth-World-Conference-on-Women-in-2015
This special section on Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID) website provides information on the 5th World Conference on Women, as well as opportunities to engage in dialogue and debate on this proposed UN conference.


III. Quick guide: global resources on gender issues in the Philippines
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The Republic of the Philippines, comprising over 7,000 islands in the Pacific Ocean, is a traditionally patriarchal society with a burgeoning women’s movement. The Philippines scores relatively highly on global gender equality indices, indicating an overall improvement in the situation of women in recent decades. At present, women hold approximately 20% of parliamentary seats.

Roman Catholicism is the predominant religion of the Philippines. Aside from the Vatican City, it is the only country that does not allow Catholic couples to divorce. The Gabriela Women's Party has recently reintroduced a long-dormant bill enabling married Catholics to divorce in the Philippines. This is particularly an urgently sought remedy for women in abusive marriages, and to secure legal entitlements (including child support).

UN Women reports that the Philippines has high rates of violence, which are largely due to entrenched patriarchal attitudes and power imbalances within the family. Despite recent legislation and gender-sensitive interventions implemented by authorities and established Women and Children Protection Centres, huge challenges remain – such as insufficient staffing and access to facilities.

The Philippines is also one of the few countries in the world to criminalise abortion in all circumstances with no clear exceptions. With over half a million abortions occurring every year in the Philippines, the country has one of the highest maternal mortality ratios in the Western Pacific Region (which is also linked to poverty). According to the United Nations Statistics Division, the Philippines is one of the most populous countries with one of the fastest growing populations in Southeast Asia.

Another urgent issue is human trafficking. The Philippines is a source country for sex trafficking, forced labour and involuntary servitude. Trafficked women are often forced into prostitution, marriage or labour (in brothels, bars, sweatshops and as domestic servants). A 2010 report by the Protection Project discusses these phenomena, as well as the responses of government, NGOs and multilateral initiatives to these human rights violations.

The following resources have been selected from a number of new additions to our Global Resources Database:

‘Philippines: steep rise in gender-based violence’, IRIN - UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, 2012
http://bridge.ids.ac.uk/go/home&id=62557&type=Document&langID=1
Since the 2004 Violence Against Women and their Children Law was passed, the number of reported cases of intimate partner violence has increased; between 2006 and 2011 it grew more than 150 percent. Philippine authorities are encouraging women to come forward, but the current infrastructure cannot handle the volume of cases.

Factsheet: The Philippines, UN Women, 2011
http://bridge.ids.ac.uk/go/home&id=62505&type=Document&langID=1
This fact sheet, produced by UN Women, presents an overview of the situation women currently face in the Philippines. It also contains information on the various ways that UN Women has been supporting governments and civil society to promote gender-responsive governance and the empowerment of women.

‘Till death do us part’, 101 Look East, Al Jazeera, 2011
http://bridge.ids.ac.uk/go/home&id=62535&type=Document&langID=1
In the Philippines, Catholic couples cannot be granted a divorce. This episode of Al-Jazeera's 101 Look East series concerns recent efforts by the Gabriela Women's Party to reintroduce a long-dormant bill enabling married Catholics to divorce in the Philippines. Arguing that it will lead to an erosion of family values, the Church opposes the bill.

‘Forsaken lives: the harmful impact of the Philippine criminal abortion ban’, Center for Reproductive Rights, 2010
http://bridge.ids.ac.uk/go/home&id=61998&type=Document&langID=1
This report addresses the human rights violations resulting from the criminal abortion ban, focusing on the experiences of women who have had unsafe abortions. It is estimated that over half a million abortions occur every year in the Philippines, and the country has one of the highest maternal mortality ratios in the Western Pacific Region.

‘A human rights report on trafficking in persons, especially women and children: Philippines’, The Protection Project, 2010
http://bridge.ids.ac.uk/go/home&id=62006&type=Document&langID=1
The Philippines has very high rates of trafficking in women and children, especially for the commercial sex industries. This report discusses the forms of trafficking, factors that contribute to the trafficking infrastructure and trafficking routes, as well as the responses of governments and NGOs to these human rights violations.

You can find other resources on gender issues in the Philippines by searching our website: http://www.bridge.ids.ac.uk/index.cfm?objectid=9C00A9E6-BAD9-AC5E-E53190748926F722

Please also visit the archive section to view past Quick Guide selections:
http://www.bridge.ids.ac.uk/go/email-updates-and-publications-by-post/bridge-updates

Follow us on Twitter: @BRIDGE_IDS

This BRIDGE Update was edited by Angela de Prairie.
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