Tag Archives: Compensation

[Announcement] Human Rights Victims’ Claims Board (HRVCB) Closes Acceptance of Applications on November 10, 2014 at 12:00 midnight, Will Open Again Once Extension Is Granted By Law

Human Rights Victims’ Claims Board (HRVCB) Closes Acceptance of Applications on November 10, 2014 at 12:00 midnight, Will Open Again Once Extension Is Granted By Law

The Human Rights Victims’ Claims Board (HRVCB) wishes to advise all possible claimants that in view of the legally-set deadline of applications for reparation and recognition under RA 10368, acceptance of applications will close at 12:00 midnight of November 10, 2014 in its main office at ISSI, UP Diliman, and in the regional desks.

Human Rights Violations Victims Claims Board

In view of the assurance of Akbayan Rep. Barry Gutierrez, in a public statement yesterday, on the passage of the six-month extension for the filing of claims by victims of human rights violations during Martial Law, the HRVCB will make the appropriate preparations to conduct the next round of acceptance of applications as soon as the extension of the filing period becomes effective.

Rep. Gutierrez stated that “victims of human rights violations during Martial Law who are unable to file by November 10, 2014 may still file their claims for reparation and recognition upon the approval of the Joint Resolution extending the filing period for claims.” Separate Joint Resolutions in the House of Representatives and in the Senate were filed seeking the extension in response to the report of the HRVCB on the incidence of continuing surges of claimants in all the application sites. The extension will also give more opportunity for other legitimate claimants living in far-flung areas to prepare their documents and file their claims.

The House has already approved on third reading said Joint Resolution for Extension of Filing Period. The Senate, on the other hand, is set to approve the same measure on third reading upon resumption of its session on November 17, 2014.

As of 5 November 2014, the total number of applications for recognition and reparation filed has already reached 39,377.

The Board wishes to inform the public about the operations of its desks located in the Commission on Human Rights Regional Offices at: San Fernando City, La Union; San Fernando City, Pampanga; Baguio City; Legazpi City; Tuguegarao City; Cebu City; Iloilo City; Tacloban City; Bacolod City; Davao City; Cagayan de Oro City; Butuan City; Zamboanga City; and Cotabato City (Regional Human Rights Center of the ARMM).

After filing period, each and every claim will be deliberated by the HRVCB to determine legitimacy of the claim and entitlement to an award. After all claims have been decided upon, distribution on the award shall be set and announced to the public. Information about the recognition and reparation process pursuant to RA 10368 is posted at http://www.hrvclaimsboard.gov.ph.

RA 10368 seeks to provide recognition and reparation, both monetary and non-monetary, to all victims of human rights violations during the dark and tumultuous Martial Law regime. Once found to be entitled, their names shall be enshrined in the Roll of Victims of Human Rights Violations, in acknowledgment of their heroism and sacrifices. The law was signed into law by President Benigno Aquino last February 25, 2013.

PUBLIC ADVISORY NO.:11-7-2014
7 November 2014
AUTHORITY: Chairperson Lina C. Sarmiento
Telephone: 0999-505-9737

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[Press Release] Akbayan Rep. Gutierrez assures passage of 6-month extension of filing of claims for ML victims

Akbayan Rep. Gutierrez assures passage of 6-month extension of filing of claims for ML victims

With the November 10 deadline fast approaching, Akbayan Rep. Barry Gutierrez on Thursday assured the passage of the six-month extension for the filing of claims by victims of human rights violations during Martial Law.

Photo from Team Barry

Photo from Team Barry

Gutierrez made the statement amid fears that the deadline will effectively cut-off the other victims from filing for claims under Republic Act No. 10368 after November 10.

“Victims of human rights violations during Martial Law who are unable to file by November 10, 2014 may still file their claims for reparation and recognition upon the approval of the Joint Resolution extending the filing period for claims,” the lawmaker said.

“We assure the victims that the deadline will not disenfranchise them or unduly cut them off from their rightful claims,” Gutierrez said.

Together with fellow Akbayan Rep. Walden Bello, Gutierrez principally authored the Joint Resolution at the House of Representatives which seeks to move the deadline of filing from November 10, 2014 to May 2015.

Gutierrez underscored that the extension was sought because of the actual situation on the ground, as reported by the Claims board, where a surge of claimants was noted during actual intake operations, particularly in their mobile intake sites.

“The six-month extension was sought to cope with the large number of persons seeking for reparation and recognition under RA 10368,” the Akbayan solon said.

“Further, this also allows the legitimate claimants, especially those living in far-flung areas of the country, the full opportunity to file their claims with the Human Rights Victims Claims Board (HRVCB),” Gutierrez said.

The House has already approved on third reading said Joint Resolution. The Senate, on the other hand, is set to approve the same measure on third reading upon resumption of its session on November 17, 2014.

“There is a strong commitment from both chambers of Congress to approve the six-month extension, which we believe is crucial in providing Martial Law victims the full opportunity for redress and ensuring that they are recognized according to their rightful place in our history,” Gutierrez said.

Thousands still pending recognition

According to the HRVCB, the total number of applications for recognition and reparation filed has already reached 36,253 as of November 4, 2014.

The expected number of claimants is at 55,000-90,000.

“It is evident that we need to expand our time frame, particularly the period for filing of applications,” Gutierrez said.

“By ensuring the passage of the proposed extension of deadline, we are giving the victims the proper recognition and compensation they deserve for their sacrifices in protecting this nation’s liberties and freedom, particularly those who are now on their final years,” the lawmaker concluded.

RA 10368, otherwise known as the Human Rights Victims Reparation and Recognition Act of 2013 was signed into law by Pres. Benigno S. Aquino III on February 13, 2013 granting all victims of human rights violations committed by the Marcos regime to receive monetary and non-monetary reparations.

6 November 2014
PRESS RELEASE
For Immediate Release
Contact Person: Rose Humiwat @ 0905 132 5474

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[Blog] When money is not enough. By Darwin Mendiola

When money is not enough
By Darwin Mendiola

A country in a democratic transition must come to terms with its past in order to move forward.

Addressing past atrocities and injustices is considered a crucial part of social healing and national reconciliation. Acknowledging the misdeeds especially human rights violations is one significant step towards guaranteeing the right of the victims for effective remedies.

Darwin 2

However, remedial measures take various forms of reparation. One way is through compensation. This serves both as an acknowledgment of the human rights violations and the sanctioning of the state for allowing or for directly committing such violations.

After more than four decades, the Philippine government through the passage of Republic Act 10368 or the Human Rights Victims Reparation and Recognition Act of 2013 finally recognizes “the heroism and sacrifices of all Filipinos who were victims” of human rights violations during martial law and “restore the victims’ honor and dignity.”

Compensation provides not only material but also symbolic political and social benefits. First, it helps bring immediate economic relief to victims and their families and allow them to meet the basic survival needs. Secondly, the monetary compensation may serve as a deterrent for future abuses by imposing financial sanctions for committing such violations.

Although harms or injuries resulting from human rights violations are often irreparable but compensation can help restore the victims’ dignity by knowing that their rights are recognized and the violations committed against them are being atoned.

But lest we forget that reparations are not primarily about money, but to publicly acknowledge the wrongdoings and to guarantee its non-repetition. It is a necessary component of the healing process as it signifies a concrete step on the part of the state to make amends and take full responsibility for the historical tragedies like Martial Law.

Compensation must therefore serve to continuously promote and protect human rights. For money can’t buy justice but it can help the victim to endlessly pursue it.

Visit Darwin’s blogsite @dars0357.wordpress.com

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[Appeal] OPEN LETTER of PAHRA to Atty. Rod Domingo: Request for Accountability and Transparency

Atty. Rod Domingo
Co-Counsel
Martial Law Human Rights Victims

November 9, 2011

Dear Atty. Rod Domingo,

In behalf of the victims of human rights violations during martial law under the Marcos regime who belong to organizations in the Philippine Alliance of Human Rights Advocates (PAHRA), we would like to express concern over the recent report that some checks belonging to similar victims have been encashed by fake claimants.  We are further alarmed that these fake claimants are poor people used by persons known to you.  All involved lawless elements should be determinedly prosecuted.

We have been informed that the sole repository of both the list of claimants and the checks due the claimants are you and your office.

It is thus not farfetched for people to speculate that the whole scheme was “an inside job”.  But much more, the speculation of a syndicate involving even “contacts” within the Commission of Human Rights has already been conjured though still needing investigation by Bayan Muna party list representatives as reported in media (cfr. Philippine Daily Inquirer, Nov.6, 2011, p.A4).

PAHRA earnestly believes that it is of utmost urgency to clear the air the soonest possible time before all the goodwill and gratitude for the initial victory obtained by the victims would be significantly eroded by this recent anomaly.  We commend that you have already advised the concerned banks “to immediately stop the payments of checks being cashed or negotiated by unscrupulous or dubious claimants”, as well conducting your own “covert investigation to get into the bottom of these activities”.  These actions certainly would protect the genuine ML victims-claimants from being victimized further.

Nonetheless, we strongly recommend that you make public your office’s accountability, including the process of distribution, to exonerate people, including yourself, and the Commission on Human Rights of any wrong doing.  We are afraid that any added delay to transparency may just make any taint of scandal for what it is worth difficult to erase in the public mind.  Sceptics and/or detractors of activities, formations and institutions of human rights defenders may also have a heyday in vilifying what really is a noble cause – to obtain justice and dignity for all.

Thank you very much for the kind consideration of this note of urgent concern.  If there be anything you may wish to clarify or you think we could be of help, please contact me or Ms. Rose Trajano, Acting Secretary General, in any of the numbers in this stationery.

Sincerely,

Max M. de Mesa
Chairperson, PAHRA