Tag Archives: Students

[Statement] Uphold the UP-DND Accord! Defend UP! -UP Manila SC

#HumanRights #DefendUP

Uphold the UP-DND Accord!
Defend UP!

The UP Manila University Student Council rejects the recent move of the Department of National Defense (DND) to unilaterally terminate the UP-DND Accord. We vow to remain in our long-fought struggle to safeguard academic freedom and the democratic rights of the members of the UP community as concretized in the agreement.

We refuse to cower to the deceptions of a government institution that masquerades as a protector of human rights but in reality, only serves as a conduit for the further curtailment of our freedoms.

Last January 15, DND Secretary Delfin Lorenzana wrote to UP President Danilo Concepcion stating the abrogation of the said agreement with the goal of “protecting and securing the institution and youth against the enemies of the Filipino people.” In the absence of any substantial evidence, Lorenzana claimed “clandestine recruitment” of the CPP-NPA in the University. The only basis thereof is the undisclosed number of UP students identified to be members of the said organization.

Lorenzana justified the withdrawal of the agreement by asserting the need to perform their legal mandate and thus allowing the unimpeded entry of police and military purposes in the University. Despite his claim of steering from “suppress(ing) activist groups, freedom and freedom of expression,” the fascist nature of the police and military renders this statement empty and deceitful. Especially in the face of the countless assaults to the UP-DND Accord and the fully broadcasted vendetta of law enforcement against dissent and activism, we have no other option but to resist.

The dangers that come with the termination of the UP-DND Accord are even amplified with the implementation of the unconstitutional Anti-Terrorism Law. When the state has exhibited unrelenting disrespect for human rights, our trust rests anywhere but the very institutions supposed to protect us.

Ultimately, we have nowhere to train our eyes to but the fascist and oppressive Duterte regime. So long as Duterte and his lackeys rest on their positions of power, our security as a nation will never be guaranteed. Hence, we call on every member, institution, and student formation of the UP community to unite in resisting and overturning the termination of the UP-DND Accord.

We must also remember that no agreement nor law could outweigh the collective struggle of the masses in advancing our democratic rights. And as we resist the DND’s advances, our struggle to unseat Duterte continues.

Uphold the UP-DND Accord!
Defend UP!

DefendUP

OustDuterte

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[Statement] Red October is Duterte-AFP plot to intensify crackdown on schools, impose dictatorship -NUSP

Red October is Duterte-AFP plot to intensify crackdown on schools, impose dictatorship
October 3, 2018

NUSP condemns the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) for tagging 18 Metro Manila school campuses as communist recruitment grounds for the “Red October” ouster plot against President Duterte. The state uses the old and ineffective “red scare” tactics to create a climate of fear and insecurity, portray itself as a victim of destabilization, and justify Duterte’s imposition of a fascist dictatorship.

The state cannot stand the fact that Duterte is unpopular among the youth for his deadly wars against the people. The malicious tagging of schools is hence part of the fabricated plot used by the state to vilify students who fight against Duterte’s tyrannical rule and anti-people policies. He fears university and college students who criticize the rottenness of his regime and forge solidarity with the rest of the Filipino people to attain education, employment, agrarian reform, and human rights.

Why are AFP and Duterte allergic to fora and films that tackle Marcos’ Martial Law and its similarities with the dictatorship that Duterte is imposing? They hate the truth because lies are the foundation of their rule. They do not want students to discuss inflation and skyrocketing prices, contractualization, Martial Law in Mindanao, the deadly war on drugs, and other pressing issues precisely because they aim to prolong the suffering of the people brought about by their policies and programs. Meanwhile, Duterte, Arroyo and the Marcoses cling to power by using violence and intimidation against dissenters.

The people know better for these schemes are not new. As an army of lies and fake news, the AFP uses deceit to invalidate other institutions and drown the legitimate demands of the masses. For instance, Lumad schools which enjoy broad public support are labelled by the AFP as rebel training camps.

Surely, this fabricated list will be used to justify the crackdown of the state on schools. As if it is fully trusted by the Filipino people, the state will intensify police presence, surveillance and red-tagging in schools in the guise of its “anti-drug”, “anti-terror” and “anti-bomb” campaigns.

The end of October can tell who is on the side of truth and who is delusional enough to dream of fictitious plots like Red October. Throughout #OctoberRage, NUSP is sure that students and youth will be more vocal. Under Duterte’s tyrannical rule, we will continue to conduct fora and discussions, promote the right to organize, and lead mobilizations against the return of dictatorship.

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[Statement] Burmese government urged to cease the assault and arrest of students protesting in Letpadan and Rangoon

10 March 2015

Burmese government urged to cease the assault and arrest of students protesting in Letpadan and Rangoon

We, the undersigned organizations, strongly condemn the latest instance of brutal and indiscriminate assault by the police and vigilante groups against the students, monks, and residents in Letpadan who have been peacefully exercising their civil and political rights. We further call on the Burmese government to immediately stop the violent attacks, harassment, and arrest of students peacefully protesting against the National Education Law, which centralizes power over the education system, hampers academic freedom, and was approved without proper public consultation.

Since 20 January, hundreds of students have been marching from Mandalay to Rangoon to demand changes to the National Education Law, passed by Parliament in September 2014. The students’ 11 demands for changes to the law include ensuring the freedom to form student unions, mother-tongue language instruction in ethnic areas, greater autonomy for universities, and the allocation of 20% of the national budget to education.

On 2 March, students resumed their protests after the government failed to meet their demands to amend the law by 28 February. A group of students in Letpadan, Pegu Division, were subsequently blocked at a monastery and prevented from marching to Rangoon. In a show of solidarity, students and other supporters in Rangoon and other parts of the country also held peaceful protests at the beginning of March.

On 5 March, police in Rangoon violently cracked down on students peacefully protesting in front of Rangoon City Hall, injuring several and arresting eight protesters, including women’s rights activist Nilar Thein. On the morning of 6 March, police in Letpadan also violently dispersed the student demonstrators held near a monastery and their supporters. Police arrested five students. These detained protesters have since been released.

On 10 March, after the protesters in Letpadan were initially allowed to go to Rangoon, police and members of vigilante groups surrounded the peaceful and unarmed protesters and proceeded to brutally attack them. Injured students, monks, and Letpadan residents who had gathered to express their support were then taken away by the police.

We strongly condemn the use of excessive force and violence against the peaceful protesters by the police.[1] The government must take responsibility for the unlawful and aggressive actions of its security forces against the peaceful protesters. These aggressive actions are reminiscent of the tactics of past military regimes that have been infamous in using lethal violence against students and crushing any form of dissent. Of particular concern is the cooperation between police forces and vigilante groups, who participated in the crackdown and used excessive force against these young women and men.

If President Thein Sein is serious about making educational reform one of the priority measures of his government, it is in his interest to take an inclusive approach by having a dialogue with the students, including leaders of the National Network for Education Reform (NNER) and other student groups in the formulation of education policy.

The violent crackdowns against student protesters further intensifies the backslide on the government’s efforts to transition to full democracy and reveals the government’s continuing reliance on repressive actions. They substantiate the critique that the Burmese government is merely putting up a façade of democratic reform for the sake of gaining political legitimacy and economic engagement from the international community.

We, the undersigned organizations, urge the Burmese government to:

–  immediately cease and desist using excessive force and violence against the peacefully protesting students, monks, activists  and residents and ensure that security forces exercise the highest degree of restraint in any interactions with the protesters  who are exercising their civil and political rights.

–  continue to hold the next hearing sessions for the draft law amending the National Education Law with the representatives of the diverse student movement, including those from ethnic and religious minorities, and to provide the students with an effective avenue to voice their concerns and propose solutions on these matters.

–  prevent any actions that violently repress the right of the students to be heard on issues that directly affect them. This includes protecting the students from the violent actions of vigilante groups that have been harassing them. We condemn the Letpadan police’s threat of using the provisions of the Peaceful Assembly Law against the right of the student demonstrators to freedom of speech, and peaceful assembly.[2]

–  investigate and hold accountable those responsible for the violence, and institutionalize nationwide measures to prevent recurrence of similar incidents.

–  drop all charges against the arrested students, and unconditionally free any students still in detention.

–  amend without delay the National Education Law in line with students’ demands to ensure authentic educational reforms that address the needs and concerns of the stakeholders.

Signatories:

1.   Action Committee for Democracy Development, Burma/Myanmar
2.   Actions Birmanie , Belgium
3.   Ain O Salish Kendra (ASK), Bangladesh
4.   All Arakan Students’ and Youths’ Congress, Burma/Myanmar
5.   Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma
6.   Article 19
7.   ASEAN Parliamentarians for Human Rights
8.   ASEAN Sogie Caucus
9.   Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development
10.  Asia-Pacific Solidarity Coalition
11.  Assistant Association for Political Prisoners, Burma
12.  Association of Human Rights Defenders and Promoters, Burma/Myanmar
13.  Association Suisse-Birmanie, Switzerland
14.  Ayerwaddy Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
15.  Backpack Health Worker Team, Burma/Myanmar
16.  Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha, India
17.  Burma Action Ireland
18.  Burma Campaign UK
19.  Burma Issues, Thailand
20.  Burma Link, UK
21.  Burma Medical Association
22.  Burma Partnership
23.  Burma-Initiative, Stiftung Asienhaus, Germany
24.  Burmese Rohingya Organisation UK
25.  Cambodian Human Rights and Development Association- ADHOC , Cambodia
26.  Centre for Human Rights and Development, Mongolia
27.  Child Rights Coalition  Asia
28.  Chin State Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
29.  Christian Solidarity Worldwide
30.  Civil Authorize Negotiate Organization, Myanmar
31.  Civil Rights Defender
32.  Coalition for Refugees from Burma (USA)
33.  Colorful Girls, Burma/Myanmar
34.  Directorio Democratico Cubano (Cuba)
35.  Empower Foundation Thailand
36.  Forum for Democracy in Burma
37.  Free Burma Campaign, South Africa
38.  Globe International Center, Mongolia
39.  HAK Association, Timor Leste
40.  Hong Kong Coalition for a Free Burma
41.  Hong Kong Committee for Children’s Rights
42.  Htoi Gender and Development Foundation, Burma/Myanmar
43.  Human Rights Foundation of Monland, Burma/Myanmar
44.  Human Rights Working Group, Indonesia
45.  Imparsial, Indonesia
46.  Indonesia Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI), Indonesia
47.  Info Birmanie (France)
48.  Interfaith Cooperation Forum
49.  International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), France
50.  Just Associates Southeast Asia
51.  Justice for Women, Burma/Myanmar
52.  Kachin Peace Network, Burma/Myanmar
53.  Kachin State Women Network, Burma/Myanmar
54.  Kachin State Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
55.  Kachin Women Peace Network, Burma/Myanmar
56.  Kachin Women’s Association Thailand
57.  Karen Community of Canada
58.  Karen Human Rights Group, Thailand
59.  Karen Women Organization, Thailand
60.  Karenni National Women’s Organization
61.  Kayan New Generation Youth, Burma/Myanmar
62.  Knights for Peace International, Philippines
63.  KontraS, Indonesia
64.  Lanna Action for Burma, Thailand
65.  Law and Society Trust (LST), Sri Lanka
66.  Magway Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
67.  Malaysians against Death Penalty and Torture, Malaysia
68.  Mandalay Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
69.  MARUAH, Singapore
70.  Migrant Forum in Asia
71.  Mindanao Action Group for Children’s Rights & Protection, Philippines
72.  Mon State Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
73.  Myanmar ICT for Development Organization
74.  National Youth Congress , Myanmar
75.  Natural Resources Accountability Myanmar
76.  Network for Democracy and Development, Burma
77.  Network for Human Rights Documentation – Burma
78.  Norwegian Burma Committee
79.  Pago Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
80.  Palaung Women’s Organization, Burma/Myanmar
81.  Panzagar , Myanmar
82.  People’s Empowerment Foundation, Thailand
83.  People’s Watch, India
84.  People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy (PSPD), South Korea
85.  Peoples’ Vigilance Committee on Human Rights, India
86.  Pergerakan Indonesia, Indonesia
87.  Philippine Alliance for Human Rights Advocates
88.  PILIPINA Legal Resources Center, Philippines
89.  Potohar Organization for Development Advocacy (PODA), Pakistan
90.  Programme Against Custodial Torture & Impunity, India
91.  Pusat KOMAS, Malaysia
92.  Radanar Ayar Rural Development Association, Myanmar
93.  Rakhine State Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
94.  Right to Know Campaign, South Africa
95.  SAARC Youth Association
96.  Sagaing Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
97.  Shan State Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
98.  Shwe Gas Movement, Burma/Myanmar
99.  Society for Threatened Peoples, Germany
100. South East Asian Committee for Advocacy
101.  Students and Youth Congress of Burma
102.  Suara Rakyat Malaysia
103.  Swedish Burma Committee
104.  Taiwan Association for Human Rights
105.  Taiwan Free Burma Network
106.  Tanintharyi Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
107.  Task Force Detainees of the Philippines
108.  Tavoy Women’s Union, Burma/Myanmar
109.  Tavoy Youth Organization, Burma/Myanmar
110.  Thai Action Committee for Democracy in Burma, Thailand
111.  Thai Volunteer Service Foundation
112.  The Life Skills Development Foundation
113.  The Seagull, Myanmar
114.  Think Centre, Singapore
115.  Union of Karenni State Youth, Burma/Myanmar
116.  US Campaign for Burma
117.  Vietnam Association for the Protection of Children’s Rights
118.  Voluntary Internship Program, Myanmar
119.  William Nicholas Gomes, Human Rights Ambassador for Salem-News.com, UK
120.  Women Peace Network Arakan, Burma/Myanmar
121.  Women’s League of Burma
122.  World Merit, Myanmar
123.  World Student Christian Federation – Asia Pacific
124.  Yangon Youth Network, Burma/Myanmar
125.  Yayasan LINTAS NUSA Batam, Indonesia
126.  Yayasan SEJIWA,  Indonesia
127.  Zo Indigenous Forum, India

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[Campaign] We are students, not customers! #EducationNot4Sale! -Sigaw ng Kabataan Coalition

We are students, not customers! #EducationNot4Sale!  -Sigaw ng Kabataan Coalition

Vote for this campaign for the 5th HR Pinduteros’ Choice Awards

Sigaw ng Kabataan Coalition

Students, Educators , Education advocates!

In Solidarity with the International Student Movement, The Sigaw ng Kabataan Coalition is calling for a National day of Action to reclaim Education. We will UNITE in solidarity, because no matter where we live, we face the same struggle against profit-driven interests and their hold on education. Budget cuts, outsourcing, school closures, climbing costs of living and tuition fees among other phenomena, are all linked to an increasing commercialization and privatization of education. Uniting globally is our answer to these obstacles – fighting for emancipatory education for all.

Students across the globe especially in the Philippines are drowning in debt. These debts, supported by the individualistic notion of “investing in one’s own future”, must be re-paid by selling our future labor. The increasing pressure to perform is sickening; the restrictions on access to education must be resisted! Everyone should have equal access to education, regardless the socioeconomic status.

The logic of the market and corresponding nation-state requires that conformity, competitiveness and profits take PRIORITY over developing the capabilities for emancipatory thinking. Both depend on consumers, cheap labor and “consent of the governed” – not individuals living self-determined lives. Hence, this is not only a student’s issue, everyone is affected! The present system educates us solely within the boundaries of what is compatible with the capitalist paradigm.

As a result, education systems primarily consist of knowledge factories which seek to reproduce the logic of the market with all its consequences. This leads to the commodification of knowledge, precariousness, and fosters the ideas of consumer culture among students.

We strongly call for the allocation of 6% of the Country’s Gross National Product to Education.

We are all struggling against symptoms of the currently predominant economic system and will only be able to overcome it by uniting our efforts.

We encourage all Youth/Student and Civil Society Organizations to join us!

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The Action that will be done shall be decided on the Meeting this coming November 11,2014. Join the meeting http://goo.gl/vWUPhy
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Join the National Coordination online through a chat meeting simultaneous to the Meeting at PSLINK Solidarity homes. Enter here http://webchat.freenode.net/…
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For queries and Clarification please e-mail us at Sigawngkabataan@gmail.com or text us at 09396707619.
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Visit and like Sigaw ng Kabataan Coalition @https://www.facebook.com/sigawko

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[Blog] The Right to Privacy: FB and the third division of the SC by Jose Mario De Vega

The Right to Privacy: FB and the third division of the SC
by Jose Mario De Vega

Section 2. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects against unreasonable searches and seizures of whatever nature and for any purpose shall be inviolable, and no search warrant or warrant of arrest shall issue except upon probable cause to be determined personally by the judge after examination under oath or affirmation of the complainant and the witnesses he may produce, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.
Section 3. (1) The privacy of communication and correspondence shall be inviolable except upon lawful order of the court, or when public safety or order requires otherwise, as prescribed by law.

Mario De Vega

(2) Any evidence obtained in violation of this or the preceding section shall be inadmissible for any purpose in any proceeding. (Article 3, The 1987 Philippine Constitution)

Does it mean that because “nothing is ever private on Facebook”, any creature or bastard or stalker or hacker for that matter can just go to our profile to stalked, peeped, looked, stared and worst, hacked, took and download our private and personal pictures, data and information as against our consent and permission?

I do not think so!

It is widely accepted that “the most frequently quoted statement by a Supreme Court justice on the subject of privacy comes in Justice Brandeis’s dissent” in Olmstead v. U. S. (1928) wherein he stated unequivocally that:

“The makers of our Constitution understood the need to secure conditions favorable to the pursuit of happiness, and the protections guaranteed by this are much broader in scope, and include the right to life and an inviolate personality — the right to be left alone — the most comprehensive of rights and the right most valued by civilized men. The principle underlying the Fourth and Fifth Amendments is protection against invasions of the sanctities of a man’s home and privacies of life. This is a recognition of the significance of man’s spiritual nature, his feelings, and his intellect.”

I refer to Tara Quismundo’s “SC: Privacy laws do not apply on Facebook photos freely uploaded by Internet users”, PDI, October 23rd with regard to the high court’s Third Division ruling that denied “a petition for habeas data filed by parents of two high school students of St. Theresa’s College (STC) Cebu, citing the protection of their Facebook photos that school officials found objectionable.”

A petition for Habeas data is a remedy provided to “any person whose right to privacy in life, liberty or security is violated or threatened” through the “gathering, collecting or storing of data or information regarding the person family, home and correspondence of the aggrieved party.”

According to the said report:

“The Facebook photos, which showed the students drinking and smoking in a bar, and wearing just undergarments on a street, prompted school officials to ban five students from marching in their graduation rites in March 2012. The photos were uploaded by one of their friends.”

Commentaries:

I cannot understand why the hell the school decided to ban said students from marching on their graduation?

Those students drunk and smoked in a bar and wore undergarments on a street — not inside the bloody school!

Those students posted the said pictures at their own FaceBook page. They did not spread it to the public, so my issue with the bloody school is: what the fuck is your problem with that?

Perhaps the bloody school will retort and say: Hey, Mister, those students that you are defending is our students.

My reply: so what? Yes, they are your students, but do you still have your academic, parental, institutional and religious power or control over them — the very moment they get out of your bloody premises?

Yes, I perfectly understand that while inside your school, those girls must observed and followed all of your conservative and myopic rules and regulations, but outside your ground — who the hell are you to tell them how the hell are they going to live and lead their lives?

It is on this note that I am condemning the lower court and so as the third division of the Supreme Court in ruling in favor of the said school!

It is my fervent and firm view that what the SC did is a stupid ruling that clearly destroys the constitutional guarantee protecting the right of privacy of the people.

Originally, in every act that an individual will do will affect two spheres or domains, namely the public and the private. Now, due to the advent of modern technology, I will argue that there is a third area which is the virtual domain.

My ultimate point is that, no matter how powerful the state or government is, it has no right whatsoever to penetrate, invade and enter the private sphere of the human acts. That zone of privacy must be respected at all cost.

In the critical words of Professor Paul Kurtz:

“Society should respect the right of an individual to control his or her personal life. The zones of privacy that society should not intrude upon without good reasons are a person’s body, possessions, beliefs, values, actions, and associations, insofar as these pertains to his or her own private sphere of interest and conduct.”

The right to privacy is a right guaranteed by the Constitution as a protection against governmental intrusion.

To quote Justice Marshall in Stanley v Georgia:

“Whatever may be the justifications for other statutes regulating obscenity, we do not think they reach into the privacy of one’s own home. If the First Amendment means anything, it means that a State has no business telling a man, sitting alone in his own house, what books he may read or what films he may watch. Our whole constitutional heritage rebels at the thought of giving government the power to control men’s minds.”

Comment:

To reiterate the government and so as the school and other institutions have no right to tell people how the hell they are going to live and lead their lives.

For as Justice Kennedy reaffirmed in broad terms the Constitution’s protection for privacy:

“These matters, involving the most intimate and personal choices a person may make in a lifetime, choices central to personal dignity and autonomy, are central to the liberty protected by the Fourteenth Amendment. At the heart of liberty is the right to define one’s own concept of existence, of meaning, of the universe, and of the mystery of human life….The petitioners are entitled to respect for their private lives. The State cannot demean their existence or control their destiny by making their private sexual conduct a crime. Their right to liberty under the Due Process Clause gives them the full right to engage in their conduct without intervention of the government. ‘It is a promise of the Constitution that there is a realm of personal liberty which the government may not enter.’”

In my view, the court, in the case under discussion has committed an irreparable damage and injury to the private rights of those students. Instead of simply accepting just like that the assertion of the school that they just saw the said pictures subject of this issue, the court should have ordered the court a quo to investigate further the truth with regard to that specific claim.

The court should have remanded the case to the lower court and ordered the same to investigate fully and pinpoint specifically who were those bastard culprits who invaded the private lives of these teenagers!

Imagine the utterly preposterous scenario, somebody took some of your private pictures against your will, without your consent and worst, without your knowledge, then those bastards (whoever the hell they are) had shown it to your boss, the school, your parents, boyfriend/girlfriend, etc. and now, you shall be penalize for that?

This is the heights of shame and the ultimate travesty of justice!

The fact that some nefarious creatures had taken your photo without your consent makes you already a victim of a cyber crime and the fact that your picture were used to punished and penalized you makes you a victim for the second time around!

Talked about adding insult to an injury and double black eyes — to the maximum!!!

The said ruling of the court is idiotic and invasive of the rights of the people.

Why? Because this ruling of the court will lead to a dangerous tendency and it will make a sinister precedent.

It is like an invitation to all hackers and virtual criminals to enter the private lives of people on the cyberspace, because as the court claimed “nothing is ever private on Facebook.”

So, if ever a hacker is caught violating the right of another, the latter can interpose the defense that: it is not I who downloaded the same by another friend of mine.

I totally agree with lawyer JJ Disini when he said that “the Supreme Court decision is scary since it creeps into the very nature of online privacy.”

He further said that “Facebook already allows users to customize privacy settings to public, friends only, custom or even completely private.”

According to him, the “privacy settings are there “precisely to control the flow of information.””

I concur with him that this ruling of the court is creepy, dangerous and sinister.

As reported by ANC, “SC junks case of Cebu students banned from graduation rites due to ‘bikini photos’”, October 25th:

“The Supreme Court is saying that even if you attempt to limit the privacy and set the privacy, as long as another person can see it, you no longer have the right to privacy on those things you have posted.”

Comment:

What the hell is this?

Further, he stated in a DZMM interview that:

“Does this mean that all your friends have the right to show all your photos with other people including school officials? Because that is what happened. Ano na ngayon ang right to privacy mo?”

“They are saying that in a social network, if you have 100 friends and your friends have 200 friends, you are essentially sharing your information to 300 friends. It is the same with email. If I email you, does that mean you can forward that to all those in your address book?”

This is judicial stupidity at its worst!

Further, it seems to me that the court is slightly implying that the whole thing is the fault of Mark Zuckerburg!

Why?

Check this out:

“We cannot afford protection to persons if they themselves did nothing to place the matter within the confines of their private zone. [Online] users must be mindful enough to learn the use of privacy tools, to use them if they desire to keep the information private, and to keep track of changes in the available privacy settings, such as those of Facebook, especially because Facebook is notorious for changing these settings and the site’s layout often.”

Comment:

Will it change the court’s ruling if the private pictures were taken, let say from Twitter or Instagram or other social networking sites?

To quote the words of Professor A. C. Grayling:

“No human rights convention is complete without an article that defends privacy, for the excellent reason that privacy is an indispensable adjunct of the minimum that individuals require for a chance to build good lives. One aspect of its importance is that it gives people a measure of control over the front they offer others, and the amount of information that others have about them, concerning matters that are personal, intimate, eccentric or constitutive of the individual’s inner life…But the foremost reason for privacy is that it is crucial for personal autonomy and psychological well-being.”

Suggestion:

I humbly suggest to the parents of those aggrieved students to file a motion for reconsideration to the Supreme Court en banc to review this fiasco and shameful ruling of its third division!

Jose Mario Dolor De Vega

Philosophy and Social Science lecturer
Unibersidad de Manila

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[Urgent Appeal] Harassment against a Student Human Rights Defender -TFDP

URGENT APPEAL

January 13, 2014

(PHILIPPINES) Harassment against a Student Human Rights Defender

ISSUES: Human Rights Defender; Harassment, Coercion and Intimidation; Student Rights and Welfare; Physical Injuries
________________________________________________

Dear friends,

The Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) is forwarding to you an appeal regarding the harassment case involving a human rights defender in the student sector.

If you wish to make any inquiries please contact the Research, Documentation and Information Program of TFDP, kindly send email to tfdp.1974@gmail.com or call +632 4378054.
________________________________________________

Case Title: Quisora HAR
Case: Harassment/Physical Injury
Name of Victim: Ernie Gonzales Quisora
Date of Incident: December 20, 2013
Place of Incident: Marikina Polytechnic College, Marikina City
Alleged Perpetrators: Mr. Joseph Quiles
Motive: One of the Alleged Instigators of Student Protest Action

Account of the Incident:

Ernie Quisora, 20 years of age, of 57 B.G. Malina Street, Parang, a student of Marikina Polytechnic College taking up Industrial Technology Major in Automotive and a Student Council volunteer, suffered minor injuries during a scuffle between him and a college professor.

TFDP logo smallOn December 20, 2013, at around 8:30am, Quisora decided to enter the school premises while a protest action is being set-up by some members and officers of the faculty association of the Marikina Polytechnic College. The said protest is in relation to the additional working hour imposed by the school officials to the members of the faculty, and the absence of a democratic process by which these policies went through without any consultation.

The Security guards on-duty inspected Quisora’s belongings and found a black t-shirt inside his bag. The security guards confiscated the t-shirt and told Quisora that it is prohibited inside the campus. He then asked the security guards, why it is not allowed? Quisora further explained that he will be wearing the black t-shirt as a replacement after his subject “Metallic and Solid Painting AT222”. Apparently, the security guards alleged that Quisora is one of students who advocate and backing the campaign protest of the faculty and that they will be wearing the black t-shirt as a sign of support.

While both were arguing, a professor named Joseph Quiles approached them.

Quisora told him what the security guards did. He added that they have no right to confiscate his t-shirt since it was “wash day”, and he can wear any attire he wants as long as it is appropriate and proper.

The heated argument started between Quiles and Quisora. Moments later, Quiles grabbed Quisora’s shirt from his chest and pulled him back and forth repeatedly. Not satisfied with what he did, Quiles snatched and snapped the lace of his school identification card while wearing with around his neck. Several students and teachers witnessed the incident. Quisora suffered a bruise to his left hand. He also felt a pain to his nape.

A few days after the incident, Quisora again encountered Quiles on several occasions. Quiles accussed him of being a liar, arrogant and discourteous to school administrators. These were done in front of students. In one occasion it happened in front of Quisora’s teacher. Quiles also threatened Quisora and told that he will “drop” him from his subject.

Quisora is now planning to file a formal complaint to concerned government agencies, and at the Marikina City prosecutor’s office for appropriate charges.

Quisora is an advocate of student rights and welfare and an active volunteer of the Marikina Polytechnic College Student Council.

REQUESTED ACTION:

Please write a letter to the following authorities, calling on them to initiate inquiries into the case of harassment and physical injuries obtained by Ernie Quisora, a student of the Marikina Polytechnic College, and urge concerned agencies to immediately intervene and resolve the case.

SAMPLE LETTER

Dear ____________,

I am writing to draw your attention regarding the case of Ernie Quisora, 20 years of age, currently residing at 57 B.G. Malina Street, Parang, a student of Marikina Polytechnic College who experienced harassment and suffered minor injuries at the hands of his professor.

I have learned that a heated argument transpired between Mr. Joseph Quiles and Quisora. Quiles grabbed Quisora’s shirt from his chest and pulled him back and forth repeatedly. Not satisfied with what he did, Quiles snatched and snapped the lace of his school identification card while wearing with around his neck. Several students and teachers witnessed the incident. Quisora suffered a bruise to his left hand. He also felt a pain to his nape.

I have also learned that the incident happened on December 20, 2013, at around 8:30am. Quisora decided to enter the school premises while a protest action is being set-up by some members and officers of the faculty association of the Marikina Polytechnic College. The said protest is in relation to the additional working hour imposed by the school officials to the members of the faculty, and the absence of a democratic process by which these policies went through without any consultation.

It was also brought to my attention that before the incident occurred, the Security guards on-duty inspected Quisora’s belongings and found a black t-shirt inside his bag. The security guards confiscated the t-shirt and told Quisora that it is prohibited inside the campus. He then asked the security guards why it is not allowed even Quisora explained that he will be wearing the black t-shirt as a replacement after his subject “Metallic and Solid Painting AT222”. Apparently, the security guards alleged that Quisora is one of students who advocate and backing the campaign protest of the faculty and that they will be wearing the black t-shirt as a sign of support.

While both were arguing, a professor named Joseph Quiles approached them. Quisora told Quiles what the security guards did. He added that they have no right to confiscate his t-shirt since it was “wash day”, and he can wear any attire he wants as long as it is appropriate and proper. At that point, the heated argument started. A scuffle transpired and Quisora suffered physical injuries.

At present, Quisora is now planning to file a formal complaint to concerned government agencies, and at the Marikina City prosecutor’s office for appropriate charges.

Quisora is an advocate of student rights and welfare and an active volunteer of the Marikina Polytechnic College Student Council.

Therefore, I humbly urge you to initiate a probe into the said case and appropriate action must be done accordingly.

I look forward to you urgent action.

Respectfully yours,

_________________________

PLEASE SEND YOUR LETTERS TO:

Please send your letters to:

1. Chairperson Patricia B. Licuanan
Commission on Higher Education (CHED)
4th Floor Higher Education Development Center (HEDC) Building
C.P. Garcia Avenue, U.P. Campus
Diliman, Quezon City 1101
Philippines
Fax: +632 4411256
Tel: +632 4410927 loc. 400, 401, 402
Email: ched.oc2011@gmail.com; info@ched.gov.ph

2. Chairperson Loretta Ann P. Rosales
Commission on Human Rights (CHR)
SAAC Bldg., Commonwealth Avenue
U.P. Complex, Diliman
Quezon City
Philippines
Fax: +63 2929 0102
Tel: +63 2 928 5655, +63 2 926 6188
Email: rosales.chr@gmail.com

3. Chairperson Leon G. Flores
National Youoth Commission (NYC)
4th Floor, Bookman Building
373 Quezon Avenue
Quezon City
Philippines
Tel: +632 4487330
E-mail: info@nyc.gov.ph

4. Mayor Del De Guzman
Marikina City
Marikina City Hall, Shoe Avenue
Sta. Elena,
Marikina City 1800
Philippines
Fax: +632 6465277; +632 6461621
Tel: +632 6461634; +632 6829281; +632 6462360-70

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[In the news] ‘Heart’ makes history in UP student elections: First-ever transgender USC chair vows ‘change’ -InterAksyon.com

‘Heart’ makes history in UP student elections: First-ever transgender USC chair vows ‘change’
InterAksyon.com
March 2, 2012

Gabriel “Heart” Diño, an MS Applied Math student at the University of the Philippines Diliman, has been elected chairman of the student council of the State University’s main unit, becoming the first transgender to lead the influential student government.

The Philippine Collegian, the official organ of University of the Philippines, posted on Twitter that Diño, of the student party Alyansa ng mga Mag-aaral para sa Panlipunang Katwiran at Kaunlaran (Alyansa), became the elected chair of the UP Diliman student council (USC) by late evening Thursday.

Alyansa itself dominated the student elections, “clinching the majority of seats in the UPD USC elections,” the Collegian reported. The party won 12 of 33 seats in the council, “including the positions of chair, six councilors, and five college representatives”.

Diño had campaigned on a platform of transparency and accountability in the student council, while also vowing to combat gender discrimination and fraternity-related violence. Born a male but proudly transgender, she said in an Alyansa statement in the week before Thursday’s elections: “I came here not only to speak about what changes we want in our University Student Council. I also stand before you to remind that you, yourselves, are the change this university and this nation needs.”

Read full article @ www.interaksyon.com