A lawmaker seeking to amend the law said husbands and partners of LGBTs (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) should receive equal protection from domestic violence the same as women and children against domestic violence should also protect husbands and members of the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender),

“I urge my colleagues to pass the Anti-Violence against Partners and their Children bill so that we can help protect victims of domestic violence, who are increasing by the day because of the pandemic,” said Rizal Rep. Fidel Nograles who filed in 2019 House Bill 4888 which seeks to amend Republic Act 9262, the Anti-Violence against Women and Children Act of 2004 or “VAWC,” to make it the Anti-Violence against Partners and their Children Act or “VAPC.”

“We must recognize that there are also male partners who are victims of abuse, yet are unable to report such incidents because of prejudice,” he wrote in the bill.

His proposal seeks to include battered husbands as well as partners of any gender or sexual orientation under the protection of the law.

“Any act of violence perpetuated as hate crimes against partners and their children would also be considered a special aggravating circumstance, which would impose the maximum penalty on the violator,” a portion of the bill read.

Nograles, a neophyte congressman and a lawyer, also seeks to include the creation of fake social media accounts to sow intrigue and inflict harm on others as an act of psychological violence.

Under RA 9262, physical, sexual, psychological, and economic abuse committed only against women and children are penalized.  Battered husbands and partners in same-sex relationships are not protected by law.

Nograles’ proposal also seeks to prohibit a spouse or partner from confiscating the salary of his or her partner defining it as economic abuse.

The bill also classifies as hate crimes any act of violence committed against partners and children, including discrimination on the grounds of sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity or expression.

“This bill shall prohibit all forms of violence against partners and their children, in private and public life, and provides maximum protection and effective remedies for victims and punishment of offenders,” Nograles said in his explanatory note.

“Thus, the bill also expands the covered acts under RA 9262 to include electronic violence done against partners and their children,” he said.   Rommel F. Lopez