(ICMEC, Romulo Mabanta Buenaventura Sayoc & Delos Angeles)
The purpose of this paper is to strengthen the child protection legal framework such that it leaves no child in the Philippines vulnerable to sexual exploitation and abuse. The analysis and recommendations reflect the real-world challenges faced by dozens of professionals navigating the, admittedly, robust child protection legal framework in the Philippines, and recommendations from a diverse stakeholder group that supports the child protection agenda.
The paper enumerates several impediments faced by law enforcement, regulators, policymakers, private industry, civil society, and others to advance effective action to combat this crime. Through practical recommendations, we endeavor to detail the current legal statutes that hinder or collectively challenge operational action by the diverse stakeholder group. We respectfully urge policymakers in the Philippines Congress to take up the cause and support the review, revision, and/or drafting of new legislation that will address the challenges identified to close the gaps that still exist leaving our children vulnerable.