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Seminar on the Anti-Violence Against Women and their Children (Anti-VAWC Act of 2004


I. Introduction The Anti-Violence Against Women and their Children (Anti-VAWC) was enacted in 2004 to protect women and their children from any and all forms of violence and abuse, particularly in the context of intimate relationships. It is both preventive and remedial. It serves as a deterrent to abusive and violent conduct against women and their children by providing for both criminal and civil penalties to the offender, thereby discouraging persons in intimate relationships with women to avoid these kinds of conduct. It is also remedial as it provides women and their children who are victims of abuse and violence specific remedies for their protection and recovery through the concerted efforts of government agencies and the local government units. The Anti-VAWC Act of 2004 is regarded as a significant piece of legislation towards the protection and enhancement of women’s human rights. However, its objective can only be effectively achieved if it is made known to women and to the society in general. Awareness of this law and the protection it offers is key to a better implementation. It is in light of this concern that the Local Government Class under Professor Rowena Guanzon of the UP College of Law is conducting seminars in barangays. The two-hour seminar that will be conducted on March 3, 2013 (Saturday) aims to disseminate information on the provisions and significance of this statute, with particular emphasis on the role of the local government units, especially the barangays, in its implementation. It is aimed at informing the women of their rights and of the remedies they may avail of in order to protect their and their children’s rights. Of equal importance is the goal of informing the barangay of the key role that they play in cases involving violence against women and their children. The flow of the discussion will be as follows: I. Violence Against Women and their Children a. Definition b. Persons protected c. Persons liable d. Acts punishable e. Penalties Remedies of the victim a. Actions available to the victim b. Rights of the victim c. Prescriptive period Protection orders a. Barangay Protection Order b. Temporary Protection Order c. Permanent Protection Order Duties of Government Agencies and LGUs




The materials that will be used for the presentation include the Anti-VAWC Act of 2004 and its Implementing Rules and Regulations. The presentation will focus on the procedural and substantive portions of the law.

The biological children of the victim ii. coercion. “sexual relations” refers to a single sexual act (which may or may not result in the bearing of a common child)3 b. psychological harm or suffering. Sec. 3(a). ii. 3(f). 3(e). or economic abuse including threats of acts. ANTI-VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND THEIR CHILDREN ACT OF 2004 What is “violence against women and their children”?1 “Violence against women and their children” refers to 1) any act or series of acts which result in or is likely to result in physical. 3(a). RA 9262 Sec. RA 9262 Sec. sexual. or with whom he has a common child. “children” refers to those below 18 years old or older but are incapable of taking care of themselves. “dating relationship”4 refers to a situation wherein i. or against her child whether legitimate or illegitimate Who are protected by the Anti-VAWC?2 1) wife 2) former wife 3) a woman with whom a person has or had a sexual or dating relationship a. the parties live as husband and wife without the benefit of marriage. former wife. It includes: i. the following: 1) Physical violence—acts that include bodily or physical harm 1 2 3 4 5 Sec. whether legitimate or illegitimate a. the parties are romantically involved over time on a continuing basis during the course of a relationship NOTE: Casual acquaintance or ordinary socialization between two individuals in a business or social context is NOT a dating relationship 4) a woman with whom a person has a common child 5) a woman’s child. RA 9262 Ibid. harassment. but IS NOT LIMITED TO. or arbitrary deprivation of liberty 2) committed by any person against a woman who is his wife. a woman with whom the person has or had a sexual or dating relationship. assault.II. battery. RA 9262 . Other children under her care Who are punishable under the Anti-VAWC? 1) Husband 2) Ex-husband 3) Live-in partner 4) A person with whom a woman has a sexual or dating relationship (whether the other is a man or a woman) 5) A man with whom a woman has a common child 6) Any person who commits violence against the woman’s child What acts constitute violence against women and children?5 It includes.

physical or other harm or threat of physical or other harm or coercion 11) Prostituting the woman or child What acts constitute “psychological violence”?7 Psychological violence acts or omissions causing or likely to cause mental or emotional suffering of the victim such as BUT NOT LIMITED to: 1) Intimidation 2) Harassment 3) Stalking • “Stalking" refers to an intentional act committed by a person who.8 4) Damage to property 5) Public ridicule or humiliation 6) Repeated verbal abuse and mental infidelity 7) Causing or allowing the victim to witness the physical. RA 9262 (a) (D). sexual. RA 9262 (a) (C).2) Sexual violence—an act which is sexual in nature 3) Psychological violence—acts or omissions causing or likely to cause mental or emotional suffering of the victim 4) Economic abuse—acts that make or attempt to make a woman financially dependent What acts constitute “sexual violence”?6 Sexual violence includes. knowingly and without lawful justification follows the woman or her child or places the woman or her child under surveillance directly or indirectly or a combination thereof. but IS NOT LIMITED to: 1) Rape 2) Sexual harassment 3) Acts of lasciviousness 4) Treating a woman or her child as a sex object 5) Making demeaning and sexually suggestive remarks 6) Physically attacking the sexual parts of the victim’s body 7) Forcing him/her to watch obscene publications and indecent shows 8) Forcing the woman/child to do indecent acts and/or make films thereof 9) Forcing the wife and mistress/lover to live in the conjugal home or sleep together in the same room with the abuser 10) Acts causing or attempting to cause the victim to engage in any sexual activity by force. Sec. including BUT NOT LIMITED to 1) Withdrawal of financial support 2) Preventing the victim from engaging in any legitimate profession. threat of force. Sec. RA 9262 (d). business or activity 3) Deprivation or threat of deprivation of financial resources 4) Deprivation of the right to the use and enjoyment of the conjugal. RA 9262 . Sec. occupation. community or 6 7 8 9 Sec. 3 3 3 3 (a) (B). or psychological abuse of a member of the family to which the victim belongs 8) Causing or allowing the victim to witness abusive injury to pets 9) Unlawful or unwarranted deprivation of the right to custody and/or visitation of common children What acts constitute “economic abuse”?9 “Economic abuse” refers to acts that make or attempt to make a woman financially dependent.

(b) Threatening to cause the woman or her child physical harm. and (5) Engaging in any form of harassment or violence. 5. (c) Attempting to cause the woman or her child physical harm. or intimidation directed against the woman or child. What are the remedies available to victims of VAWC? 1) Protection orders—BPO. (d) Placing the woman or her child in fear of imminent physical harm. physical or other harm or threat of physical or other harm. RA 9262 . (f) Inflicting or threatening to inflict physical harm on oneself for the purpose of controlling her actions or decisions. (i) Causing mental or emotional anguish. occupation. (2) Peering in the window or lingering outside the residence of the woman or her child. or attempting to restrict or restricting the woman's or her child's freedom of movement or conduct by force or threat of force. the following acts committed with the purpose or effect of controlling or restricting the woman's or her child's movement or conduct: (1) Threatening to deprive or actually depriving the woman or her child of custody to her/his family. public ridicule or humiliation to the woman or her owned in common 5) Destroying household property 6) Controlling the victim’s own money or properties 7) Solely controlling the conjugal money or properties What specific acts constitute VAWC?10 (a) Causing physical harm to the woman or her child. (4) Preventing the woman in engaging in any legitimate profession. and denial of financial support or custody of minor children of access to the woman's child/children. TPO. that alarms or causes substantial emotional or psychological distress to the woman or her child. (4) Destroying the property and personal belongings or inflicting harm to animals or pets of the woman or her child. (2) Depriving or threatening to deprive the woman or her children of financial support legally due her or her family. but not limited to. physical harm. the following acts: (1) Stalking or following the woman or her child in public or private places. or through intimidation directed against the woman or her child or her/his immediate family. repeated verbal and emotional abuse. or deliberately providing the woman's children insufficient financial support. (e) Attempting to compel or compelling the woman or her child to engage in conduct which the woman or her child has the right to desist from or desist from conduct which the woman or her child has the right to engage in. (3) Depriving or threatening to deprive the woman or her child of a legal right. but not be limited to. or reckless conduct. by force or threat of force. This shall include. (g) Causing or attempting to cause the woman or her child to engage in any sexual activity which does not constitute rape. (3) Entering or remaining in the dwelling or on the property of the woman or her child against her/his will. but not limited to. knowing. including. PPO 10 Sec. business or activity or controlling the victim's own mon4ey or properties. personally or through another. or properties. (h) Engaging in purposeful. or solely controlling the conjugal or common money. This shall include.

43. RA 9262 Sec. 3. despite the absence of an element for justifying circumstances. (b) to avail of legal assistance form the PAO of the Department of Justice (DOJ) or any public legal assistance office.14 Until when can the victim file a criminal case for the violation of the Anti-VAWC act?15 1) For acts under Sec. if found so by the court. and (e) To be informed of their rights and the services available to them including their right to apply for a protection order. RA 9262 . Ra 9262 Sec. 5 (a) to (f) – 20 years 2) For acts under Sec. RA 9262 Sec. 24. What is a “protection order”?17 A protection order is an order issued for the purpose of preventing further acts of violence against a woman or her child and granting other necessary relief. (c) To be entitled to support services form the DSWD and LGUs' (d) To be entitled to all legal remedies and support as provided for under the Family Code. 25. extendible when the necessity arises as specified in the protection order. Victims are also entitled to take a paid leave of absence up to 10 days in addition to other paid leaves under the Labor Code and Civil Service Rules and Regulations. RA 9262 Sec. What 1) 2) 3) is the purpose of the relief granted under a protection order?18 Safeguarding the victim from further harm Minimizing any disruption in the victim’s daily life Facilitating the opportunity and ability of the victim to independently regain control of her life Who may file a petition for protection order?19 1) Offended party 2) Parents/guardians of the offended party 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 Sec. 35. RA 9262 Sec. 9. RA 9262 Ibid. Sec. 8.2) Criminal action 3) Civil action for damages What are the rights of the victim?11 In addition to their rights under existing laws. RA 9262 Sec. 26. do not incur liability. victims of violence against women and their children shall have the following rights: (a) to be treated with respect and dignity. F (g) to (i) – 10 years Who may file a complaint for VAWC?16 Violence against women and children shall be considered a public offense and can thus be prosecuted upon the filing of a complaint by any citizen having personal knowledge of the circumstances involving the commission of the crime.12 Do victims incur criminal or civil liability when defending against acts of VAWC? Victims who suffer from Battered Women Syndrome13.

How does one apply for a protection order?22 1) Application must be written. signed. or collateral relatives within the 4th civil degree of 4) 5) 6) 7) 8) consanguinity or affinity Officers or social workers of the DSWD or social workers of LGUs Police officers (preferably those in charge of women and children’s desk) Punong barangay or barangay kagawad Lawyer. the application shall be acted upon by any available Barangay Kagawad. RA 7160 RA 9262 Ra 9262 . Request for counsel and reasons for such vi.21 2) The TPO or PPO may be filed in the family court in the place of residence of the petitioner. Sec. MTC. 14. Names and addresses of petitioner and respondent ii. RA 9262 RA 9262. Circumstances of consent given by the victim for the filing of the application What is a Barangay Protection Order? A BPO is a protection order issued ex parte by the Punong Barangay ordering the respondent to stop: (a) causing physical harm to the woman or her child. A statement of the circumstances of the abuse iv. and shall contain. and verified under oath by the petitioner •A standard protection order application form. therapist. Sec. If the BPO is issued by the Barangay Kagawad. counsellor. the application must be accompanied by an affidavit of the applicant attesting to a. the petition may be filed in the RTC. or healthcare provider of the petitioner At least 2 concerned responsible citizens of the city or municipality where the violence against women and their children occurred and who has personal knowledge of the offense committed Where should one apply for a protection order?20 1) The BPO may be applied for in the barangay where both the petitioner and respondent reside. Sec. descendants.23 Who may issue a BPO? A BPO is issued by the Punong Barangay. If they live in different barangays. written in English with translation to the major local languages. Sec. shall be made available to facilitate applications for protections order. Request for waiver of application fees until hearing vii. or (b) threatening to cause the woman or her child physical harm. 10.3) Ascendants. If there are no existing family courts. 409. MCTC with territorial jurisdiction over the place of residence of the petitioner. 11. The circumstances of the abuse suffered by the victim b. the petition shall be brought in the barangay where the respondent resides. If the Punong Barangay is unavailable to act on the application for a BPO. MetroTC. among other. An attestation that there is no pending application for a protection order in another court 2) If applicant is not the victim. it must be accompanied by an attestation by the Barangay Kagawad that the Punong Barangay was unavailable at the time of the 20 21 22 23 Sec. Description of the reliefs requested by petitioner v. the following information: i. 10. Description of relationships between petitioner and respondent iii.

26 Who issues How issued When issued Effectivity Enforceability Service BPO Barangay Captain Barangay Kagawad Ex parte On the date of filing of application 15 days In the same territory Personal service TPO Family Court RTC/MetroTC/MTC/MC TC Ex parte On the date of filing of application 30 days Anywhere Personal service PPO Family Court RTC/MetroTC/MTC/MC TC After notice and hearing After notice and hearing (?) Effective until revoked Anywhere Personal service May the Punong Barangay or Barangay Kagawad hearing the application for BPO convince the applicant to compromise or abandon the reliefs sought in the application?27 No. RA 9262 Sec.30 What is the consequence of a violation of a BPO?31 Violation of a BPO shall be punishable by imprisonment of 30 days. unless the court finds compelling reasons not to give custody to her. or in any way unduly influence the applicant to compromise or otherwise abandon the reliefs sought in the application for protection. RA 9262 Sec. Barangay officials and the courts shall schedule and conduct hearings on applications for a protections order above all other business and. The Punong Barangay or Barangay Kagawad shall not order. force. 21. RA 9262 . however. suspend other proceedings in order to hear the applications for a protection order. Take note. 25 BPOs are not enforceable anywhere in the Philippines. 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 Ibid. 14(d). 18. if necessary. The hearings to determine the basis of applications for a protection order shall have priority over all other proceedings. the official shall be administratively liable. RA 9262 IRR Sec. Only TPOs and PPOs are enforceable outside the territory that they were issued in. RA 9262 Sec.24 Are all protection orders enforceable anywhere in the Philippines? No. 12.28 What is the consequence of failure to act on applications for protective orders?29 The failure to act on an application within the reglementary period without justifiable cause shall render the official or judge administratively liable. 33.issuance of the BPO. Sec. direct. RA 9262 Sec. How will an issue of child custody be resolved in cases involving VAWC? The woman-victim shall be entitled to custody and support for her children. This is without prejudice to any other criminal or civil action that the offended party may file for any of the acts committed. that barangay officials are obligated to assist the BPO applicant in applying for a TPO or PPO in court after the BPO has been issued. RA 9262 Sec. 28. Otherwise. 20.

and (h) immediately report the call for assessment or assistance of the DSWD. nurse. incidence and consequences of such violence particularly towards educating the public on its social impacts. (d) safeguard the records and make them available to the victim upon request at actual cost. and there is imminent danger to the life or limb of the victim as defined in this Act. (d) assist the victim in removing personal belongs from the house. MetroTC. RA 9262 . RA 9262 Sec. clinician. (b) properly record any of victim's suspicions. (c) transport or escort the victim/s to a safe place of their choice or to a clinic or hospital. (f) ensure the enforcement of the Protection Orders issued by the Punong Barangy or the courts. (g) arrest the suspected perpetrator wiithout a warrant when any of the acts of violence defined by this Act is occurring. and services available to them. barangay health worker. including.Where to file a complaint for violation of a BPO?32 The complaint must be filed directly with any MTC. but not limited to. (e) assist the barangay officials and other government officers and employees who respond to a call for help. therapist or counselor who suspects abuse or has been informed by the victim of violence shall: (a) properly document any of the victim's physical. (b) confiscate any deadly weapon in the possession of the perpetrator or within plain view. 30. social Welfare Department of LGUs or accredited non-government organizations (NGOs).00) or whenever applicable criminal. (c) automatically provide the victim free of charge a medical certificate concerning the examination or visit. Sec. What are the duties of a healthcare provider?34 Any healthcare provider. emotional or psychological injuries. 31. and (e) provide the victim immediate and adequate notice of rights and remedies provided under this Act. observations and circumstances of the examination or visit. What are the duties of barangay officials and law enforcers?33 (a) respond immediately to a call for help or request for assistance or protection of the victim by entering the necessary whether or not a protection order has been issued and ensure the safety of the victim/s. 32 33 34 35 Ibid. What are the duties of other government agencies and LGUs?35 It is their duty to establish program such as education and information campaign and seminars or symposia on the nature. or MCTC that has territorial jurisdiction over the barangay that issued the BPO. Any barangay official or law enforcer who fails to report the incident shall be liable for a fine not exceeding Ten Thousand Pesos (P10. 31. an attending physician. or when he/she has personal knowledge that any act of abuse has just been committed. RA 9262 Sec.000. causes. civil or administrative liability.

RA 9262 .It is also their duty to ensure the sustained education and training of their officers and personnel on the prevention of violence against women and their children. What 1) 2) 3) 4) 5) 6) are the mandatory programs and services for victims of VAWC?36 Temporary shelters Counselling Psycho-social services Recovery Rehabilitation programs Livelihood assistance 36 Sec. 40.