The Department of Development Communication headed by Dr. Christina A. Gabrillo, the Development Communication Society, together with the University Student Services Office and DYDC-FM, organized on February 24, 2015 a seminar on Anti-Sexual Harassment and Anti-Hazing Awareness at the VSU Center for Continuing Education. It was participated in by college and high school students of the University. The seminar was also sponsored by CAFS-GAD and ASHO.

Dr. Gabrillo, in her opening remarks, thanked the participants for attending because it only shows how concerned and interested they are to know more about the laws and be clarified about it, what it is and what are the repercussions of doing such act. She thanked Atty. Danny N. Valenzuela, a Development Communication alumnus, who served as resource speaker, for sharing his expertise in law,  for us to be informed and how to avoid it. She also encouraged the participants to have an engaging discussion with the speaker.

Meanwhile, in his discussion, Atty. Valenzuela explained that under the law, work, education or training related sexual harassment is “committed by a person who is having authority, influence or moral ascendancy over another in a work or training or education environment, demands, requests or otherwise requires any sexual favor from the other, regardless of whether the demand, request or requirement for submission is accepted by the object of said Act.” The law covers workers or employees, applicants or candidates for employment, students and those undergoing training or education.

On the other hand, as explained by Atty. Valenzuela, the concept of hazing, from the title “An Act Regulating Hazing and Other Forms of Initiation Rites in Fraternities, Sororities and Organizations and Providing Penalties Therefore.” Hazing is allowed if regulated. The elements in the violation of the law is, it is a prerequisite for admission into membership in a fraternity, sorority or organization; hence, if the victim is already a member, there is no violation of the anti-hazing law but the illegal act is punishable by the Revised Penal Code; and the recruit, neophyte or applicant is placed in either an embarrassing situation or is subjected to psychological suffering or injury.

Atty. Valenzuela graduated from the Bachelor of Science in Development Communication, Magna Cum Laude in 1990. His focus is more on alternative laws. He teaches in University of San Agustin, Central Philippine University and some development communication courses at the West Visayas State University. He also served before as president of the Foundation for the Philippine Environment. SMCLemos