Divorce bill refiled, Hontiveros believes Filipino families deserve second chances
By Kristelle Bechayda
Senator Risa Hontiveros announced earlier today, July 10, that she refiled the absolute divorce bill in the Philippines with the hope it would finally be passed into law this 18th Congress.
According to Hontiveros, it was high-time for the government to provide greater chances to find love and build nurturing families.
“Karapatan nating lahat na magmahal, mahalin at maging masaya kapiling ang mga mahal natin sa buhay. Anuman ang katayuan natin sa lipunan, karapatan nating lahat na lumigaya,” she explained.
Will re-file the divorce bill next week. We need to help women (& men) in this matter, especially those trapped in abusive relationships. https://t.co/13orvKzgOy— risa hontiveros (@risahontiveros) July 5, 2019
The grounds under the proposed divorce measure are ‘psychological incapacity of either spouse,’ ‘irreconcilable marital differences,’ marital rape, or having been separated for at least 5 years, among others.
“This measure is for all. However, I want to stress the importance of protecting women from being trapped in abusive relationships and the need to provide a legal mechanism for that protection,” she explained.
Protecting women and children
Hontiveros claimed that a huge number of women are suffering from domestic violence and psychological abuse, citing statistics from the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) that shows one in four women experience spousal violence.
While she respected individuals who choose to marry, Hontiveros also sympathizes and supports women who may wish to break free from an abusive relationship, warning that unhealthy marriages bring trauma that are passed on for generations through children.
“They, together with their children, deserve not only a second chance, but all the chances available in this world to find true love and meaningful relationships and build nurturing families,” said Hontiveros.
The senator said that it is the government’s duty to protect the Filipinos’ well-being and quality of life, noting that the lack of legal options has tied wives and husbands to toxic pasts even when they have already been separated.
“The passage of a divorce law is one of the ultimate forms of freedom we can give Filipino women. When we give them the real chance to turn the page, we allow them to return to safe and nurturing homes they can call their own again. We believe that this is real respect for the sanctity of family and marriage,” she added.
“Filipino women and families deserve a second chance to live good lives. Let us make it possible for them,” she said.
Story from Manila Bulletin.