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  • Writer's pictureThe San Juan Daily Star

Bill filed to certify students in anti-gender violence curriculum

Rep. José Pérez Cordero

By The Star Staff

Rep. José “Ché” Pérez Cordero filed House Bill 1566 on Thursday for the Office of the Women’s Advocate and the Department of Education to certify students in the public school system against abuse and gender violence.

The measure was filed in response to the sharp increase in cases of femicide and domestic violence that have been registered on the island. According to the most recent figures from the Puerto Rico Police Bureau, 7,906 incidents of domestic violence were recorded in 2021. Meanwhile, figures reported by the press state that, as of April 16, 2022, some 2,326 incidents of domestic violence had been reported for that year.

“Eradicating violence is the work and commitment of everyone in our society,” Pérez Cordero said. “We already know that the Department of Education will begin to educate students about respect and equity in all its schools and that it will be carried out according to grade level, but it requires dividing empowerment and leadership tools, among other benefits. Implementing measures such as these represents a nominal economic investment, but with an extremely beneficial balance.”

“It is necessary to empower young people with tools that help them carry a message of eradication and rejection of dating violence,” the legislator added. “Education is one of the main tools for eradicating the evil of violence in all its forms. Our young people are the foundation and schools are the ideal environment. By training them to take this important message to their peers, we are contributing to addressing this evil and in turn providing to young people the materials, literature or records used for the certifications that must be aligned with the public policy of the governor, Pedro Pierluisi, around violence and, in turn, be aligned with the work on respect and equity that Education has been leading.”

Likewise, the Department of Education and the Office of the Women’s Advocate will be instructed to evaluate the content, join specialists from both agencies and establish the contact hours necessary to obtain the certification, which will even require learning the services that the women’s advocate offers to the community, the lawmaker said.

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