One Billion Rising (OBR), the global campaign against violence against women, celebrated its 10th year in the Philippines with more dances, poetry and songs at the Commission on Human Rights grounds on Valentine’s Day yesterday, February 14.
Attended by hundreds of participants, OBR 2022 urged communities worldwide to utilize arts and activism as a creative form of resistance to violence against women and girls.
OBR global director and renowned stage actor Monique Wilson said this year’s OBR sought to shine a light on “the rampant impunity and injustice that survivors (of violence) most often face.”
Women’s group Gabriela secretary general Joms Salvador said OBR 2022 was held against a backdrop of record-breaking economic crises.
“[W]omen are left to fend with extreme unemployment, inflation of (prices) basic goods, oil and utilities, an ensuing pandemic and intensifying acts of violence and human rights violations against women,” Salvador said.
“[N]ow more than ever, we must rise to defend the rights and security of Filipino women,” she added.
Salvador also cited the country’s dire political situation as contributors to women’s insecurity, including the junking of disqualification petitions against the candidacy of former Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr. for the presidency in the elections in May.
“We women now face a battle for our lives as we risk a return to the dark, bloody history of Marcosian rule and, with it, the perpetuation of the murderous (Rodrigo) Duterte brand of leadership, both of which had claimed the lives of thousands of women who dared speak truth to power,” Salvador said.
Gabriela distributed red roses at the event in remembrance of the women victims of Ferdinand Marcos Sr.’s martial and the “tyrannical, misogynistic Duterte regime.”
First held in 2013, OBR Philippines is one of 75 such event worldwide.
OBR was created by playwright Eve Ensler most popular for her play The Vagina Monologues.
OBR 2022 was attended by Senate aspirants Neri Colmenares and Elmer Labog as well as Kabataan Party Rep. Sarah Elago, Bayan Muna Reps. Ferdinand Gaite and Eufemia Cullamat and Gabriela Women’s Party Arlene Brosas. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)