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Sep 11 19, 10:51 am

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Pinoy lawyers address bullying to curb suicides among teens

by | Feature

Sep. 11, 19 | 10:51 am

A group of lawyers is pursuing a campaign against bullying in many parts of Cebu to protect, educate young people and prevent suicides.

“I read about young teens committing suicide somewhere down south. You see, I am a mother myself and my weakness are children. When I saw that the reason for committing suicide was that of bullying, from all sources, — classmate, parents, teachers, —- I decided to start with this,” lawyer Mundlyn Martin told The Filipino Times.

She said there are a lot of unreported cases, especially those involved in cyberbullying.

Martin said the campaign was initiated during her time as head of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) Cebu chapter in 2017.

“The only way for us to stop this is through educating. It is with knowing that each will then understand,” she added.

She said the focus of the campaign in on disseminating information, what to do and what not to do.

“We empower the students by making them soldiers. They protect and they educate the young ones too,” she said.

“I see that every child has a potential- they will become doctors, scientists, teachers, lawyers,” she added.

Martin said they educated as young as Grade 2 students, college students, teachers, parents, and guidance counselors.

With teachers, Martin said, “For them to properly instill discipline but within the bounds of the law. And to be a parent, in terms of proper guidance, emotionally when a student is being bullied.”

The program of IBP-Cebu is congruent to the call of the World Health Organization (WHO) for action to stop suicides.

In a report of the Agence-France Presse, WHO said on Monday that nearly 800,000 people commit suicide each year — more than those killed by war and homicide or breast cancer.

In a fresh report, the UN health agency said the global suicide rate had fallen between 2010 and 2016, but the number of deaths remain stable because of a growing global population.

“Despite progress, one person still dies every 40 seconds from suicide,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement, adding that “every death is a tragedy for family, friends and colleagues.”

The global suicide rate in 2016 — the last year for which data was available — stood at 10.5 per 100,000 people.

The global suicide rate fell by nearly 10 percent from 2010 to 2016, with the western Pacific showing declines of nearly 20 percent and Southeast Asia registering a decline of only 4.2 percent.

“Suicides are preventable,” Tedros said.

The director-general called “on all countries to incorporate proven suicide prevention strategies into national health and education programs in a sustainable way.”

The WHO report, in the AFP story, did not mention the causes or issues that move people to decide to take their own life.
But the health organization pointed out its concern over the statistics on suicide cases.

(With report from AFP)

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It has a print run of 60,000 copies and 250,000 readership per week; bolstered by 2.5 million visitors to its website every month. It also has an e-newsletter sent to its 250,000 subscribers every day.

The Filipino Times is FREE and has the widest targeted circulation across the 7 emirates of the UAE.

With more than 2,500 strategic distribution spots, TFT is available where the Filipinos are - at Smart Bus Shelters, Metro Stations, restaurants, supermarkets, schools, airport lounges, Emirates and Etihad Philippine-bound flights, churches, Filipino community events and many more.

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