Wednesday, December 3, 2014


MANILA-On the very first working day after the Senate lifted its 90-day suspension against two of its minority members, Senator Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada buckled down to work and resumed his lawmaking functions by filing a host of legislative proposals.
Last Monday December 1, Sen. Estrada submitted for consideration of the chamber five bills which seeks to address a variety of problems – from poorly maintained public restrooms to the protection of victims of violence against women and children.
Jinggoy introduced Senate Bill 2476 or the establishment of Address Confidentiality Program for the victims of violence against women and children. He noted that over a ten period, the number of reported VAW cases has steadily increased – from 218 documented cases in 2004, shooting up to more than 9,000 in 2010 and to 16,517 in 2013.
Estrada is proposing the adoption of the US government program of address confidentiality for the victims, providing them substitute address for public records which will be helpful for them to start and lead normal lives, safe and far from their abusers.
Sen. Estrada is also pushing for a definition of the prevalent crime of identity theft through Senate Bill 2477. The measure further provides stiff penalties for offenders (imprisonment of up to 20 years and/or a fine of up to 5 million pesos) and directs the National Statistics Office and the Department of Justice to assist victims of identity theft and to correct their false records.
In another legislation, Jinggoy seeks to lay down guidelines and minimum requirements for the operations of dormitories and boarding houses. In his Senate Bill 2478 Estrada wants to ensure that all dormitories and boarding houses, which serve as temporary shelters for many students in the metropolis, be safe, clean and conducive to living and learning.
The bill mandates that such spaces offer decent living conditions with adequate lighting, proper ventilation, enough room for mobility, fire protection facilities, study room, first aid equipment, garbage disposal systems, and closed-circuit television (CCTV). Local government intervention is also espoused in specific matters including issuance of licenses, prescription of minimum rentals, and imposition of annual fees.
Sen. Estrada also filed Senate Bill 2479 which seeks to regulate tattooing and body piercing and prohibition of such acts on minors.
Lastly, under Senate Bill 2480 Sen. Estrada wants every private and government institutions to set up functional and sanitary separate comfort rooms for men, ladies and persons with special needs and disabilities.
The abovementioned bills were earlier filed during the previous 15th Congress, and were re-filed by Sen. Estrada as they were not enacted into law. These are expected to be referred to their respective committees upon the First Reading this afternoon before the plenary.
Sen. Estrada was recognized as one of the most productive and prolific legislators with the most number of bills filed, a considerable number of which were eventually passed into law. For the present 16th Congress, Sen. Estrada has already filed 569 bills and resolutions.

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