Philippine Children in Crisis

Philippine children, Author US Marines from Arlington, VA, Source flickr (PD as work product of federal govt.)

The Duterte Administration of the Philippines has resorted to mass arrests in its war on drugs, and is planning to broaden that hard line approach to include children [1][2].

New legislation would impose mandatory prison terms of up to 12 years on children as young as 9 y.o.  The children of the poor will be most heavily impacted, since they are more likely to join drug gangs in an effort to survive.

The US State Dept. website describes our nation’s relationship with the Philippines as “based on strong historical and cultural links and a shared commitment to democracy and human rights [3].”

According to the non-profit Human Rights Watch, however, conditions at government facilities for children are already inhumane.  This is particularly true at Bahay Pag-asa (“House of Hope”).  Locked in cages, children there suffer from skin infections suggesting inadequate diet and sanitation.

“I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me’ ” (Matt. 25: 36).

[1]  The Defender Magazine, Spring 2019, “Children in Crisis:  A Report from the Philippines”.

[2]  New York Times, “Philippine Law Would Make 9-Year-Olds Criminally Liable” by Jason Gutierrez, 1/22/19,

[3]  US Department of State, “US Relations with the Philippines”, 7/17/18,



Filed under Abuse of Power, Child Abuse, Emotional Abuse, Justice, Law, Neglect, Physical Abuse, Poverty

13 responses to “Philippine Children in Crisis

  1. Pingback: Philippine Children in Crisis — ANNA WALDHERR A Voice Reclaimed, Surviving Child Abuse

  2. This is sad Anna..
    Children are already a commodity of labor and sex trafficking..
    We have made no lasting changes through war.
    Americas war budget should be redirected to children and family’s.

  3. Anna, you are a true crusader for people’s rights regardless of their age, ethnicity, or plight. One voice is tantamount to change. Thank you!

  4. Wouldn’t it be wonderful Anna if the Philippine government would commit this same level of support towards providing stable employment which would raise the standard of living there? Or improving their education system? Seems like they want to copy our own failed efforts in this war against illegal drugs. You would like to think that reasonable people would look at our debacle in fighting the drug trade and realize that there must be a better solution. Like maybe lets get to the root cause of why people turn to drugs in the 1st place?

  5. Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree

    Thank you for bringing the crisis of children to blogging. It is very important that we all be mindful of the abuse, hunger and homelessness in the world. E.

  6. Nice and informative. We always highlight such social issues but a few come up with solutions.

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