PEZA joins the advocacy by wearing purple shirts on all the Wednesdays of March to signify support for women’s empowerment and gender equality.
Why purple? Firstly, history shows that the suffragette movement, which fought for women’s right to vote in the early 20th century, used purple, white, and green as their colors.
The three colors were used to represent three important aspects of the movement: purple for dignity, white for purity, and green for hope. These colors were often used in banners, ribbons, and clothing worn by suffragettes during protests and rallies.
In addition, the color has its own cultural history independent of the women’s movement, associated with royalty, luxury, and ambition. that’s because, historically, purple dye was expensive and difficult to make, making it a color reserved primarily for royalty and the wealthy.
As a direct result, the color became a symbol of power and status. This symbolism has been embraced by feminist movements, who have used the color to represent the power and ambition of women.
The Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) has welcomed this year’s National Women’s Month Celebration (NWMC) today with a kick-off activity today at the PEZA Head Office.
The 2023 NWMC marks a juncture in the advancement of women’s rights with the launching of the new recurring theme: WE for gender equality, WE for inclusive society. This sparks a renewed commitment to the advocacy and banks on the gains achieved during the 2016-2022 theme, WE Make CHANGE Work for Women, which emphasized the need for compassionate and harmonized networks towards gender equality and women’s empowerment (GEWE).
For the kick-off ceremony, the PEZA GAD Focal Point System (GFPS) have invited Microsourcing Philippines Inc. CEO/President Haidee Enriquez and Concentrix Philippines Sr. Director for Training and Quality Rica Villaroman to share their knowledge and expertise in promoting women empowerment, gender equality and inclusivity at the workplace and within the community.
The GFPS also awarded during the kick-off activity the winner of the GAD logo making contest, which aims to update the PEZA GAD’s logo and likewise strengthen efforts to raise awareness and maximize the participation of all PEZA employees and locators in the implementation of various GAD projects, programs, and activities.
For the whole month of March, the PEZA GAD will also conduct other activities in commemoration of the 2023 NWMC. This includes #PurpleWednesdays which signifies support for women’s empowerment and gender equality, and blood donation drive in partnership with the Philippine Red Cross at the PEZA Head Office and the public ecozones. “PEZA vows to continue crafting and implementing policies that support gender equality, promote the use of gender-fair language, and provide gender-sensitive services to both our employees, clients, and other stakeholders. Let us continue to fight for equal rights and provide a voice for both women and men,” noted PEZA OIC Director General Tereso Panga.
In continuous pursuit to promote gender-sensitive economic zones in the country, the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) has joined the 18-day campaign to end Violence Against Women (VAW) which began last 25 November until 12 December 2022.
PEZA OIC and Deputy Director General for Policy and Planning Tereso Panga ensures that “PEZA will continuously raise awareness to end VAW in the ecozones and contribute to the attainment of our goal of a #VAWFreePH, in line with our efforts to protect the rights of our workers and promote the Philippines as an investment haven in Asia.”
In line with the campaign, the PEZA Gender and Development (GAD) Focal Point System has conducted various activities aimed at raising awareness on the problem of violence and the elimination of all forms of violence against women and children, particularly in the ecozones.
For the duration of the event, the activities included the presentation of topics and infomercials regarding 18-day campaign to end VAW, production of promotional materials (i.e., VAW Advocacy Shirts, 18-day campaign to end VAW streamers and banners), and the use of various online marketing collaterals such as the VAW sticker packs on Viber and VAW Zoom background on teleconferences.
18-day campaign to end VAW
Mandated under Republic Act 10398 or the Act declaring November 25 of every year as the “National Consciousness Day for the Elimination of VAWC”, the 18-Day Campaign to End VAW supports the Philippine government’s goal of protecting the human rights of women and girls by upholding its commitment to address all forms of gender-based violence as enshrined in the 1987 Constitution.
For the observance of the campaign this year, the Philippine Commission on Women (PCW) has released Memorandum Circular No. 2022-04 dated 14 September 2022 with aims to highlight the gains and milestones achieved in the efforts to prevent and address VAW in the country toward the assessment of VAW-related laws’ implementation.
At the same time, all government agencies and LGUs are enjoined to align their campaign activities to continue to broaden the general public’s knowledge on the laws protecting women and girls from violence as well as the services available for victim survivors.
In support of this campaign, Ms. Patricia Anne Gallardo-Marcelo, the founder of Save Our Women Inc., also shared some insights about ending violence against women and in promoting a gender-inclusive society during the culmination of the PEZA 18-day Campaign to End Violence Against Women.
According to Ms. Gallardo-Marcelo, “There are at least 7.5 million women and girls from ages 15 to 49 who are experiencing domestic violence or different form of violence in our country today. The problem is, only about 1% has spoken and has asked for help. We’re so far away talaga from ending domestic violence and VAW.”
Ms. Gallardo-Marcelo likewise noted that it is our role to end the stigma or taboo and the best way we can do about it is to make it part of the conversation.
“We really need to do our share. We need to listen and to help these women and men so that they can battle the violence that is happening to them… Once we start talking about it, especially to the younger ones, we educate them and help them be aware so it won’t happen to them. It’s more on prevention,” noted Ms. Gallardo-Marcelo.
Efforts towards GAD
PEZA continues to strengthen its efforts to ensure the implementation of Gender and Development (GAD) related activities and its inclusion in policies and programs within the zones through the PEZA Gender and Development (GAD) Focal Point System (GFPS) headed by Pampanga Economic Zone OIC Allan Datahan, vice-chair Atty. Jessica Palisoc, and members OIC GM Vivian Toledo, Atty. Bernadette Quitoriano, and DC Melencio Silo IV as well as the GFPS Technical Working Group.
Panga stated, “We constantly work on our initiatives to end VAWC, implement the Safe Spaces Act (Bawal Bastos Law) in relation to Anti-Sexual Harassment Law and promote Gender Diversity and Inclusion.”
At the same time, PEZA encourages all its stakeholders to include the creation of GAD policies and its implementation within their respective jurisdictions.
Noteworthy, PEZA incorporated gender and development mainstreaming in the new PEZA’s Quality Policy.
“Through the PEZA GFPS, we will continue to craft policies that support gender equality, promote the use of gender fair language, and provide gender-sensitive services to both our employees, clients, and other stakeholders. Let us be one in achieving an inclusive economy and a #VAWFreePH,” noted the PEZA interim chief.
In celebration of the National Women’s Month, the Philippine Economic Zone Authority – Mactan Economic Zone’s Gender and Development Team in partnership with the Visayas Federation of Ecozone Service Providers conducted PCV13 (Pfizer) Vaccination with the agenda to build a healthier and more resilient juans and juanas, ready to make change for inclusive progress and development.
In line with the celebration of the National Women’s Month this 2022, the PEZA Gender and Development (GAD) Focal Point System (GFPS) has partnered with the Philippine Red Cross for a blood letting activity last March 29, 2022.
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