In a recent Facebook post, Senator Risa Hontiveros brought to everyone’s attention “Mahilig sa Bata,” a page that contains explicit pictures and videos of underaged girls. “Nakarating sa opisina ko na mayroong mga Facebook pages kung saan naka-post ang napakaraming mahahalay na larawan ng mga babaeng bata,” Hontiveros’ post reads. “Napakasakit makita ang mga ito, lalo na para sa akin bilang isang ina at babae.”
A post from the said group reads, “Mahilig ka ba sa batang babae? Anong age? Comment ka kung gusto mong ng mga video ng bata at gagawa ako ng groupchat sa Telegram for that.”
As of writing, the page has been taken down. However, seeking justice for these young girls and making the perpetrators accountable should not stop. In the same post, Hontiveros called on the National Bureau of Investigation to hunt down the people behind the page and expressed the need for their arrest. Aside from this, she said that Facebook—which has the means to remove these pages from their site—should also instigate the prevention of similar pages from occupying the internet.
Aside from women, children are at high risk for abuse during the quarantine, ABC News says. Save the Children Philippines’ SaferKidsPH aims to address this concern and promote child safety against online predators. For additional support, they’ve laid out these helplines:
1) PNP Aleng Pulis – +63 919 777 7377
2) Action Against Human Trafficking – 1343 within Metro Manila; (02) 1343 outside Metro Manila
3) Bantay Bata – 163
4) UP-PGH COVID-19 Bayanihan Operations Center – 155 200
We can also contact the Department of Justice through (+632) 523 84 82 and (+632) 523 6826; and PNP Complaint Action Center through 09985988116. Let’s all stay vigilant and fight for more safe spaces for women and children.
Art by Zaila Mae Urmeneta