Republic Act No. 11313- The Safe Spaces Act of 2019

Republic Act No. 11313, the Safe Spaces Act of 2019, otherwise known as An Act Defining Danger Based Sexual Harassment in Streets, Public Spaces, Online, Workplaces, And Educational or Training Institutions, Providing Protective Measures And Prescribing Penalties Thereto was signed into law by President Rodrigo R. Duterte in April 17, 2019 and released last July 15, 2019.

Under Section 2 of the Safe Spaces Act, the law was enacted pursuant to the “policy of the State to value the dignity of every human person and guarantee full respect for human rights.  It is likewise the policy of the State to recognize the role of women in nation-building and ensure the fundamental equality before the law of women and men.  The State also recognizes that both men and women must have equality, security and safety not only in private but also on the streets, public spaces, online, workplaces and educational and training institutions.”

The specific acts punished under the Safe Spaces Act are laid down in Section 11 thereof, to wit:

  1. Cursing, wolf-whistling, catcalling, leering and intrusive gazing, taunting, cursing, unwanted invitations, misogynistic, transphobic, homophobic, and sexist slurs, persistent unwanted comments on one’s appearance, relentless requests for one’s personal details such as name, contact and social media details or destination, the use of words, gestures or actions that ridicule on the basis of sex, gender or sexual orientation, identity and/or expression including sexist, homophobic, and transphobic statements and slurs, the persistent telling of sexual jokes, use of sexual names, comments and demands, and any statement that has made an invasion on a person’s personal space or threatens the person’s sense of personal safety;
  • Making offensive body gestures at someone, and exposing private parts for the sexual gratification of the perpetrator with the effect of demeaning, harassing, threatening or intimidating the offended party including flashing of private parts, public masturbation, groping and similar lewd sexual actions;
  • Stalking and any of the acts mentioned in paragraphs (a) and (b), accompanied by touching, pinching, or brushing against the body of the offended person, or any touching, pinching, or brushing against the genitalia, face, arms, anus, groin, breasts, inner thighs, face, buttocks, or any part of the victim’s body, even when not accompanied by acts mentioned in paragraphs (a) and (b).

Download the full text of RA 11313.

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