Statement of the Commission on Human Rights lauding House bills which push for women’s equal participation in political parties and gender-responsive systems during emergencies

Statement of the Commission on Human Rights lauding House bills which push for women’s equal participation in political parties and gender-responsive systems during emergencies

The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) expresses its utmost support for House Bills being deliberated at the House Committee on Women and Gender Equality which envision to address the existing gender gaps in political participation and in establishing protocols during public health emergencies, threats, disasters, and other events that directly respond to the specific needs of women. As the Gender and Development Ombud of the country, we recognize that these bills will positively influence the development of women’s rights in the country once passed.

Filed by Rep. Patrick Michael Vargas and Rep. Geraldine B. Roman, House Bills No. 6004 and 9667, also known as the “Women Participation and Representation in Political Parties Act,” envision a more robust recognition of women and their role in nation-building by promoting an equitable representation of women across various political parties. In these bills, an emphasis on “provid[ing] facilities and opportunities for women […] to realise their full potential in the service of the nation” was noted through incentivising political parties who consider women participation as a priority agenda within their group.[1][2]

Meanwhile, House Bills No. 6001 and 9835, also known as the “Gender Responsive and Inclusive Public Health Concern and Disaster Management Act,” filed by the same lawmakers put forward a State policy which reprograms existing frameworks to address the gender-differentiated needs of women. A multi-sectoral and interdisciplinary approach during emergency situations will be crucial by providing the space to “institutionalise real, actual and meaningful participation of women, at-risk individuals and communities […] and those who are most vulnerable to violations of human rights during such situations” in order to provide the specific needs and concerns of marginalised and vulnerable groups.[3][4]

The Commission extends its commendation to the lawmakers who drafted the aforementioned bills as these set forth better avenues for the recognition of women and their inherent rights. We acknowledge the extensive effort to remain consistent to the principles stated in the Magna Carta for Women such as the eradication of the discrimination targeted against women, protecting and defending their rights, and ensuring that marginalised and vulnerable women communities are able to also realise their “role as agents and beneficiaries of development.”[5] It is also important to actively recognise the need for sufficient women participation in the political sphere, to also empower more Filipinas to take part in more leadership positions and advocate for the rights of their fellow women.

We take this opportunity to further call for State legislations which cater to the full enjoyment of women’s rights and ensure that they are protected from all forms of discrimination and violence. As we celebrate Women’s Month, we set a reminder to all that it is the Constitutional right of women to proactively take part in nation-building. In order for them to take up space as leaders in the country and in their own communities, it is our primary responsibility to guarantee that we make the first step towards championing women’s rights.


[1] Senate Bill No. 6004,

[2] Senate Bill No. 9667,

[3] Senate Bill No. 6001,

[4] Senate Bill No. 9835,

[5] Section 5, Magna Carta of Women