10.06.2015

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Grains Industry Week celebration in SurSur underway

By Greg Tataro Jr.

TANDAG CITY, Surigao del Sur, Sept. 23 (PIA) – The “Grains Industry Week” celebration in Surigao del Sur being spearheaded by the National Food Authority (NFA) is currently underway.

According to Rolando Sindo, NFA officer-in-charge (OIC), this started on September 21 and will culminate in the agency’s 43rd anniversary celebration on September 25.

With the theme “Seguridad sa Pagkain, Tungkulin Natin,” the activities had been organized “to open awareness to all our people the importance of food security and quality,” he said.

Stakeholders and representatives of national government agencies as well as the youths had been invited to take part to “showcase their role and significance in the food security value chain,” Sindo added.

The NFA provincial chief pointed out that “these activities encourage individuals and stakeholders to be a ‘food guardian,’” defining it as “making rice available, accessible, affordable and safe for the public.”

Sindo explained that since Monday, volunteers had been allowed to take ‘selfies’ and to upload their photos on their respective social media account carrying the caption “I AM A FOOD GUARDIAN,” saying its purpose was to “share their photos on food guardian site with the hashtag #1for100iNFAntry.”

An “OPEN WAREHOUSE” had been ongoing as part of the weeklong event, citing that “all will be able to enter the warehouse to take a glimpse inside,” he also said.

Taking “photos with rice stocks pile as the background to be uploaded on their social media accounts with the hastag #INGATYAMANNGPAGKAINPILIPINO  #NFAOPENWAREHOUSE” had been allowed, it was learned.

Meanwhile, the NFA here bared that they received a total allocation of 84,960 bags with local rice at 2,835 bags and imported ones at 76,030 bags for the period September 19-21, 2015. (Radyo ng Bayan-Tandag/PIA-Surigao del Sur)


Feature: High incidence of domestic violence in PH affects work and workers, study finds

QUEZON CITY, Sept. 23 (PIA) – One in five respondents reported personal experience with domestic violence (DV) at some point in their life, the Philippines’ first ever national survey on the impact of domestic violence on workers and in workplaces released today revealed.

An additional 20% of respondents knew someone at work who had experienced domestic violence.

Jointly launched by Philippine unions, Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (TUCP), Federation of Free Workers (FFW), Sentro ng mga Nagkakaisa at Progresibong Manggagawa (SENTRO) and the International Trade Union Confederation-Asia Pacific (ITUC-AP), the Philippine online survey looks at the experiences of workers with domestic violence and how violence affects their work, attendance, performance, and safety at work, not only for  those  directly affected by the violence, but also their co-workers.

ITUC-AP general secretary Noriyuki Suzuki stressed that the survey, just like all the other union-initiated workplace surveys in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, UK and Turkey, “reflects similar hard data and evidence regarding the clear and strong link between gender-based violence (GBV), workers’ safety and work performance.”

Other key findings from the survey include one in five (21%) respondents reported experiencing various forms of domestic violence, including emotional/psychological (74%), physical (37%) and harassment (17%), mostly from their husbands (46%), wives (13%), partners (21%), boyfriends (11%) or girlfriends (6%).

Nearly 84% of those who had experienced domestic violence reported that the violence affected their attendance at work (being late, missing work, or both), the report said.

One in two (54%) of those who experienced domestic violence, reported that the violence continued at or near the workplace in the form of abusive phone calls or text messages (33%) or stalking or harassment outside the workplace (16%).

About 75% reported that DV affected their work performance as they were unwell (45%), distracted (41%), injured (23%) and tired (18%) from the DV.

A total of 62% of the respondents who reported knowing someone at work who had experienced domestic violence said that their co-workers’ ability to work were similarly affected, due to being distracted (66%), unwell (43%), tired (31%), or injured from the domestic violence (27%).

Domestic violence also affected the well-being of other employees. Over 55% of respondents said that co-workers were stressed or concerned about the abusive situation (34%), their work load increased, their schedules were changed (15%), or caused conflict and tension with co-workers (14%).

One in three respondents (34%) who had experienced domestic violence reported that their abuser was employed in the same workplace.

Nearly 74% of respondents who reported knowing someone at work who had experienced DV reported that their co-worker’s DV experience affected them [respondents], too – they  were stressed or concerned about the abusive situation (45%), DV caused conflict and tension between them (19%), and their work was affected, e.g., increased workload (15%).

One in two (53%) of those who had experienced DV discussed the violence with somebody at work; with co-workers (88%), managers/supervisors (51%), union (38%), or human resources (35%). “Privacy” (40%), “fear of being judged” (22%), or “felt embarrassed or ashamed” (18%) were major reasons for not disclosing their experience with anyone at work.

Worse, one in ten (10%) of domestic violence victims indicated they had lost their job as a result of DV, while one in five (21%) experienced discrimination from the employer as a result of discussing their DV experience.

Of the domestic workers (kasambahay) respondents, 30% had personally experienced various forms of abuse either from current or former employers or member of their household, often in the form of psychological or emotional abuse (e.g., calling names), sexual and physical abuse, harassment and coercion. Some respondents have been abused both at home (by family) and by their employers.

“The results of this study are loud and clear - domestic violence is a workplace issue, with significant costs to employers in terms of decreased or lost productivity, poor performance, tardiness, absenteeism, employee turnover, safety hazards for those directly affected and co-workers,”said Suzuki.

“There could be huge gains for workplaces for promoting GBV (including domestic violence) prevention, workers’ safety and protecting and assisting employees experiencing domestic violence,” added Suzuki.

The Philippine study is part of the larger initiative to contribute to the international knowledge base on this issue.  “The Philippines can be proud of having, the most comprehensive laws on violence against women and on Domestic Workers, and still the only one in the region to have ratified ILO Convention 189 on domestic workers,” Suzuki added.

The findings further underscore the significance of this issue to both employers and unions.

Almost one-fourth (23%) of those who experienced DV applied for paid leave or just went absent without leave  because they needed to deal with health/medical issues related to the domestic violence (26%); attend appointments related to the domestic violence, e.g., barangay, police (22%);  attend counselling related to the domestic violence (21%); or attend criminal or family court hearings.

Respondents’ awareness of legally mandated paid domestic violence leave is low at 39%. 45% said they had received information about DV from government, from the union (30%).

The vast majority of respondents (92%), whether they had personally experienced DV or not, believed that DV impacts the work lives of those experiencing abuse.

Yet, respondents also thought that employers (39%) or unions (17%) are not aware when DV is affecting workers. One in four (26%) of respondents said that employers do not act in a positive way when workers report their DV experience. The rate for unions was better at one in 7 (15%).

Among all respondents, 92% think that workplace support such as paid leave, education, training, and safety policies for domestic violence could reduce the effects of violence on the work lives of workers.

“With this clear evidence, awareness-raising campaigns, prevention and protection programs, care and support for  affected workers need to be broadened,” Suzuki said.

“The trade union movement is ready to work more closely with the Philippine government, employers, relevant agencies and partners on this new and exciting journey - to turn this evidence into policies and actions to improve the well-being of workers - women, men and their families, and build safer, healthier and better workplaces for all,” Suzuki concluded.  (FEA/AFT, ITUC-AP/PIA-Caraga)


Feature: DA-SELAP Phase II: A legacy for development in Caraga

By Aurelius P. Arais

BUTUAN CITY, Sept. 23 (PIA) - As the Support to Emergency and Livelihood Assistance Project Phase II (SELAP2) comes to an end this year, the Department of Agriculture (DA) Caraga constructed a total of 12 farm to market roads (FMR) since 2012 with a total length of 8.585 kilometers amounting to P48.5 million.

Two FMR’s are set to be completed this year in Dinagat Islands particularly in the municipalities of Dinagat and Cagdianao.

Other FMRs are located in Buenavista, Magallanes and Santiago in Agusan del Norte; San Francisco and Malimono in Surigao del Norte and San Miguel, Lanuza and Cagwait in Surigao del Sur. 

SELAP2 Finance and Livelihood focal person Jessica Da-an said that under SELAP2 all farm to market roads are fully concrete in conformation to DA’s guidelines.

“A concrete FMR lasts long and could withstand different climatic conditions and could be utilized for a longer period of time,” Da-an said.

Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala said that the primary problem with gravel roads is that they are not resistant to the effects of changing climate. Hence, DA readily implemented the resolution that all DA FMR’s would be concreted.

Alongside the construction of FMRs, SELAP2 also implemented 19 livelihood projects amounting to P5.7 million and now managed by the respective peoples’ organizations (PO).

Each PO were funded P300,000.00 for their livelihood projects ranging from food processing, handicraft making and production of value adding products from abaca and coconut.

Romueld Borromeo, purok president of Sitio Ipil, Agsam, Lanuza, Surigao del Sur said that the construction of the farm to market road in their area greatly helped their constituents for easy movement of products and residents.

“We are very grateful that DA-SELAP2 constructed this road, it gives us relief from hardships of transporting our products just as we had experienced before. During emergencies, this road is a big help,” Borromeo said.

The roads’ benefit was not only confined to agriculture but also brought other basic services of the municipality much accessible to the people. Mayor Jose Arpilleda of Madrid, Surigao del Sur said that SELAP project boosted their campaign against malnutrition.

 “With the products made by farmers’ wives as members of the RIC, children can now access a healthy drink which is good for the body not just for the small ones but for the older ones as well,” Mayor Arpilleda said.

Madrid is a recipient of a livelihood project through the Patong-Patong Rural Improvement Club with their Soya Milk Processing and Soya Coffee.

The Support to Emergency and Livelihood Assistance Project (SELAP) is a special project of the national government implemented by the DA funded by a loan under the United States Public Law 480 (PL 480).

It is primarily designed to cater to the needs of the poorest or marginalized sectors and areas in Mindanao. It is implemented in Regions IX, XI and Caraga.

SELAP2 had been implemented since 2012 and will end this year while SELAP Phase 1 runs from 2006 to 2011. (DA Caraga/PIA-Caraga)


AgSur tribal leaders sign manifesto to free tribal domains from NPA infestation

PROSPERIDAD, Agusan del Sur, Sept. 23 (PIA) – Some 60 tribal leaders all over the province of Agusan del Sur convened on Monday and issued a two-page manifesto to call on the New People’s Army (NPA) to leave their ancestral domain in the province.

In a consultation made in one of the resorts here, Datu Manggubat Marcus Gonzales, Provincial Tribal Chieftain reviewed and read one by one the provisions of the manifesto they have earlier prepared before the council in order to confirm their commitment to fight for their cause to drive away the NPA from their domains and prepare themselves to fight the NPA infiltration in their areas and stop any activities that the NPA plan to inflict.

“As we all hear from radio, television and other media outlet, the brutal killing in Diatagon, Lianga Surigao del Sur was all blamed to the baganis, the tribal warriors. Yes, the people they called baganis are tribal warriors as termed by the lumads ever since, but presently, there is no legal or listed bagani all over the country and we do not know if they are real baganis. Who knows? The order of the national government is to disarm the bagani, but who will they disarm?" said Mayor Dario Otaza of the municipality of Loreto, the father of the tribal leaders who liberate the municipality from the NPA's presence.

"The tribal warriors whom we, the tribal leaders who have recognized the bagani as defender and protector of our domain? How about the NPA? Why blame that terroristic deed to our protectors and defenders? Why not to the NPA?” Mayor Otaza told.

The manifesto, which will be submitted to the Department of the National Defense, the President of the Philippines and other government offices, will support the strengthening of the real bagani whom the tribal leaders recognized as protectors and defenders of their areas or territories from any harm and violators of their rights.

Other provisions of the manifesto include their readines to fight and eradicate the NPA in the province that spread fear and disrespect to human rights, be lumads and non-lumads; that all organization of the NPA in the province have no right to join in any organization or discussion by the tribal groups; to stop organizing or strengthening of their organizations in the province especially in the tribal communities and territories and condemn the activities of their fronts like the Karapatan, ALCADEV, Bayan Muna and other groups that teach the communist ways to children and local residents.

“In Agusan del Sur alone, more than 300 tribal leaders and lumads were killed by the NPAs, but until now, they are unknown. We have brought these incidents in the national level but to no avail. We wonder why the killing of the three victims in Surigao del Sur shocked the country and even the whole world and gain recognition," Datu Gonzales said.

"We can ask then, who are behind all these? Are our brothers and sisters who were killed by the NPAs not worthy of their lives? Or just because we have no propaganda arm to sensationalize their deeds and condemn them (NPAs)? As leaders, it is now time to be ready to dedicate our lives for our rights as lumads and die for our tribes,” he added.

According to Datu Gonzales and Mayor Otaza, they are preparing to conduct a tribal summit to be attended by all tribal leaders of Caraga Region and government officials on October. However, the exact date was not yet set. (DMS/PIA-Agusan del Sur)


Cebuano News: ‘Sajaw Siargao 2015’ malampuson nga gipahigayon

SIARGAO ISLAND, Surigao del Norte, Sept. 23 (PIA) – Malampuson nga gipahigayon ang masadya og mabulolokon nga Sajaw Siargao 2015 niadtong Setyembre 21 karong tuiga didto sa dakong hawanan sa General Luna Central Elem. School, ning probinsya.

Adunay otso ka mga grupo sa mga mananayaw ang misalmot gikan sa lungsod sa Socorro diin ilang gipasundayag ang ilang Tinabangay Festival, ang lungsod sa Burgos sa ilang Kalamansi Festival, Dapa uban sa ilang Kinhason Festival, San Isidro sa ilang Sani Festival, Sta. Monica sa ilang Sapao Sapao Festival, sa General Luna ang ilang Cabuntog Surfing Festival, sa Del Carmen ang ilang Bakhaw Festival ug sa lungsod sa Pilar nga mao ang Liplipan Festival.

Ang Kinhason Festival sa lungsod sa Dapa mao ang midaug ug nakakuha sa unang ganti ug Best in Production Design ingon man usab sa Contingent Queen.

Ikaduhang mananaug mao nag Pagtinabangay Festival sa lungsod sa Socorro ug sila usab ang midaug sa Best in Street Dancing ug ang ikatulong dapit mao ang Cabuntog Surfing Festival sa General Luna.


Atol sa maong kalihukan, gipahigayon ang pag pang apod-apod og tabang pinansyal (financial assistance) ug pagtunol (turn-over) sa mga pumpboat ug gamit kahimanan sa lungsod sa Socorro alang sa programa sa seaweeds fishery development and marine conservation ubos sa programang HEALS sa probinsya. (SDR/PIC-SdN/PIA-Surigao del Norte)