This lecture is organized by Studium Generale and the Shelter City Project. The lecture is held by human rights defender Juvie Ann Gultiano, who is dedicated to the empowerment of minorities and marginalized groups in the Philippines. As a result of her work, she has been on the receiving end of harassment and intimidation. She has been threatened while in the field doing documenting work.

She will speak about her work and the situation in the Philippines. She works with the Task Force Detainees of Philippines (TFDP) where she monitors and documents human rights violations, such as civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights committed by state and non-state actors. Her work focuses on human rights violations against the indigenous people of Mindanao. She works on the distribution of grants for human rights defenders, particularly women and the LGBTIQ+ community, who are in need of immediate assistance.

Despite the elections in May 2022, severe human rights violations continue to take place in the Philippines, as the effects of the violence set in motion by former President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs (2016-2019) ripples across society. Alleged drug traffickers, communists, journalists, lawyers, and human rights defenders are frequent targets of extrajudicial killings carried out by undercover armed groups and security forces. The government suppresses investigations into these killings and targets dissidents speaking up and those who document human rights violations by ‘red-tagging’ them, claiming alleged communist affilia­tions as an excuse for suppressing their activities.

TFDP has been red-tagged by the Filipino government in an attempt to obstruct their documentation and monitoring work. These threatening and stressful circumstances have left Juvie drained and in a constant state of stress.