Historic Inauguration of Human Rights and Gender Equality Offices by the Philippine Department of Justice

04 December 2023

Manila, Philippines – In a significant stride towards strengthening its justice system, the Philippine Department of Justice (DOJ) has proudly inaugurated the Human Rights Office (HRO) and the Gender and Development Special Protection Office (GSPO). The event, held at the DOJ headquarters in Manila, represents a pivotal moment in the nation's ongoing efforts to uphold human rights and support gender equality initiatives. The keynote address, delivered by Undersecretary Brigido J. Dulay, underscored this moment as a significant step in the Philippines’ dedication to these crucial societal pillars.

Timed to coincide with the National Human Rights Consciousness Week, the inauguration signifies the DOJ's unwavering commitment to embedding human rights principles and gender-sensitive policies. The establishment of the HRO and GSPO marks a monumental point in the DOJ’s storied 126-year history, reinforcing its path towards a more inclusive, equitable, and rights-focused justice system.

The ceremony was also a time to honor the tireless work of key figures such as Undersecretary Raul T. Vasquez, Assistant Secretary Majken Anika S. Gran-Ong, Assistant Secretary Randolph A. Pascasio, and OIC Senior Deputy State Prosecutor Hazel C. Decena-Valdez. Their relentless pursuit of justice and dedication to the cause has been instrumental in the realization of these offices, reflective of the DOJ's robust agenda to fortify human rights protections.

Under the leadership of DOJ Secretary Jesus Crispin C. Remulla, the Department has taken a decisive step forward. This inauguration not only acknowledges the progress made but also sets the tone for future advancements. It is a clear statement of the DOJ's resolve to act as a guardian of the people, ensuring that every individual's rights are respected and that gender equality is not just an ideal, but a practical reality within the justice system.

As the global stage prepares to observe the 75th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the DOJ's initiative in inaugurating the HRO and GSPO stands as a testament to the nation's commitment. This development is not just a local achievement but a significant contribution to the worldwide human rights discourse, signaling the Philippines' readiness to be at the forefront of this important global conversation.

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