Senator urges DoH to ensure gender equality

Published by rudy Date posted on March 13, 2009

MANILA, Philippines — A senator has urged the Department of Health (DoH) to ensure gender equality in government hospitals and medical facilities after receiving reports of sexual harassment and discrimination against female doctors, interns and nurses.

In a letter to Health Secretary Francisco Duque III, Senator Pia Cayetano pushed for the establishment of gender sensitivity boards in all medical facilities under the DoH.

“In observance of this year’s International Women’s Month, the establishment of Gender Sensitivity Boards would be more meaningful for women [health] professionals and hospital workers,” Cayetano said.

“It would provide a venue where problems involving gender issues in the workplace can be discussed and hopefully resolved,” she said.

Cayetano said her office has been receiving reports of alleged sexual harassment and discrimination in government medical facilities.

Cayetano said all complaints about discrimination and harassment because of gender could be elevated to the gender sensitivity boards and with confidentiality and dispatch.

She cited the Philippine General Hospital (PGH) in Manila, which has established its own gender sensitivity board.

“Sexual harassment and gender discrimination must be eliminated in the workplace. It certainly has no place in government hospitals, where women comprise the majority of workers” she said.– Maila Ager,

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