GENERAL SANTOS CITY—The General Santos city government's social welfare department has launched a program for immediate response to violent incidents and crimes.
The Bantay Kabanay at Komunidad Program aims to gather thousands of anti-violence advocates and teach citizens how to report violence within the community.
“Tuturuan natin sila na dapat magreport una sa barangay tapos sa social worker at humingi agad ng tulong sa pulis. We want them to care (about) what’s happening in their community. Sila ang magiging mata natin sa bawat purok natin sa GenSan,” said Rebecca Magante, head of the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO).
The participants will be given contact details in their respective barangays so they can report any untoward incidents.
“If they will report to us immediately, our response will be faster, will be easier. We want them to be trained about the information pathway, so we can address their concerns, the concerns of the community immediately,” Magante said.
The program was launched after a video went viral on social media that showed a father from Barangay Batomelong abusing his own children.
Magante said the incident was "not an isolated case."
“In fact it is happening across our community, across the country. The father of the kids has a problem, nagseselos siya doon sa asawa niya. Wala siyang makitang paraan para makuha ang atensiyon ng asawa kundi magvideo sa mga anak niya at inupload sa Facebook. Pero hindi niya alam na ang laki ng consequence sa social media,” she said.
The father in the viral video has yet to be found but the CSWDO said the three kids are safe in a temporary shelter. Barangay officials continue to monitor the whereabouts of the abusive father who said he will show up only when his wife returns to the city.