Category Archives: Law and Law-related issues

Environment and Biodiversity Experts Renew Call for Stronger Measures to Combat Illegal Wildlife Trade

On World Animal Day, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has reiterated its call for the approval of two Senate bills that seek to strengthen Republic Act 9147 or the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act of 2001.

DENR-Biodiversity Management Bureau Director Datu Tungko M. Saikol said it is high time to amend the gaps in the law two decades after its implementation.

Badian, Philippines. Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

“We commend the House of Representatives for passing House Bill 9833 revising the Wildlife Act of 2001 on third and final reading and call on our good Senators to pass Senate Bills No. 2078 and 2079 to strengthen our fight against wildlife crimes. Almost 20 years after the Wildlife Act took effect, the threat of extinction of wildlife species in the Philippines is still not far behind, wreaking havoc to our biodiversity that supports our livelihood and economy,” Saikol said on Monday, October 4.

“Illegal wildlife trade, which is the second biggest threat to species survival globally, increases the risks of zoonotic diseases, or the transfer of diseases from animal to humans, leading to outbreaks,” Saikol said. “With the lessons learned from the Covid-19 pandemic, it is imperative to pass a strengthened wildlife conservation and protection law without delay,” he also asserted.

Tarsier. Bohol, Philippines. Photo by Julian Paolo Dayag on Unsplash

The law, once amended, will effectively deter wildlife trafficking not only in the country but also in other global destination points. “As a result, it will prevent if not eliminate the incidence, at least in the Philippines, of another infectious disease such as Covid-19, which originated in animals and caused unprecedented loss of human lives worldwide,” he also said.

SB 2078 and SB 2079 were filed by Senator Cynthia Villar and Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri, respectively. Both bills seek the imposition of stronger and more specific penalties. They also seek to strengthen enforcement capacity and the removal of legal loopholes exploited by illegal wildlife traders.

Apo Reef. Photo by Farhan Sharief on Unsplash

From 2010 to 2020, more than 67,500 wildlife specimens worth at least P248M were confiscated from 523 suspected law violators. At least 153 criminal complaints have been filed in court, with 29 cases resolved and 47 criminals convicted.

The Philippines is one of the world’s 17 mega-diverse countries that host two-thirds of the Earth’s biodiversity. Unfortunately, the country has become an important source, transit, and destination point for illegal wildlife trade, now the fourth largest illegal trade worldwide behind illegal drugs, arms, and human trafficking.

The value of illegal wildlife trade in the country is estimated at P50 billion yearly or $1 billion, including the market value of wildlife and its resources, their ecological role and value, damage to habitats, and loss in potential ecotourism revenues.

The Birth Injury Guide for Parents

Childbirth is supposed to be a joyful event for the family. A would-be mom does everything she can to take care of her unborn child. But, what if an unforeseen incident happened to her precious baby before or during childbirth? Childbirth defects or injury is a trauma no parents would want to experience. 

Fortunately, there is a comprehensive birth injury guide for families coping with birth injuries and defects. 

The Birth Injury Guide website, staffed by an advocacy group, works with professional writers and researchers, health care providers, lawyers, and other birth injury experts to provide the most comprehensive birth injury information source available.

The website is easy to navigate. You can search the types of birth injuries, symptoms and causes, the distinction between natural defect and birth injury, and if the child with birth injury will get better. All these questions are answered and explained on the Frequently Asked Question page.  

The Birth Injury Guide estimates that around 28,000 babies in the United States are born each year with a birth injury. Unfortunately, many of these injuries are the result of negligence by health care providers. 

Photo by Solen Feyissa on Unsplash

The usual birth injuries include umbilical cord prolapse, birth trauma, C-section injuries, drug-related negligence, and epidural birth injuries. The website listed the treatment for a specific condition.

When the parents intend to pursue a case against a medical provider for allegedly inflicting the birth injury to their child, the Birth Injury Guide will provide legal assistance to help them get the justice they deserve.

The website clarifies that they are not trying to replace the information provided by medical and legal experts. They hope to provide readers with accurate information about birth injury. 

If you are a parent coping with a child with a birth injury, the Birth Injury Guide will lead you to support groups to help you deal with the situation. The support groups will direct you to a network of families who have experienced a similar event. 

Check on their website to know more about their advocacy. If you need assistance for a free case review, you can fill out a form or call toll-free at 877-415-6603.

Prevent family violence

Changing times and shifting lifestyles lead to confusion and uncertainty in many families. This can lead to abuse of children and wives.

Family violence is a crime. It can be psychological or physical abuse of any family member, and ranges from insulting, threatening, yelling, grabbing, biting, hitting, punching, kicking to raping or even killing.

Image by Ulrike Mai from Pixabay

Some people are unable to discipline their children in a loving way. Because of a lack of knowledge and self-control, they abuse the child. Sometimes they repeat the bad experiences they had as children. Afterwards, they generally do not feel good about it. This damages their self-esteem – even their pride – and destroys the parent-child relationship.

Violence on children may result in lack of trust, permanent physical or mental damage to them, suicide attempts, and even death.

Wives may be abused by their husbands and vice versa. This can start with a small argument and end in a beating causing serious physical and emotional damage and possible marriage breakdown.

How do you avoid violence in your family?

  • Talk about your disagreements with a family member. And listen.
  • At all times, practice self-control
  • Always think positively. Think of your love for your family. They are part of you – your own flesh and blood.
  • If you cannot control your temper, seek the help of other people such as your own parents, relatives, or close friends. Otherwise, seek professional help.
  • If your feel angry, lonely, inadequate, resentful and disappointed, remember that other people also feel these things. Try not to resort to violence.
  • You can form group-therapy sessions if you want to change your behavior, such as group meetings of parents.
  • Do not be ashamed to seek advice from other family members and close friends.
  • Show love and respect to everyone in the family.
 
Source: Things Adults Can Do To Stay Healthy. World Health Organization