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HomeMedico-LegalPhilippines raises sex consent age from 12-years-old

Philippines raises sex consent age from 12-years-old

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte has signed into law a Bill that raises the minimum age of sexual consent from 12 to 16, his office said on Monday (7 March), in a bid to protect minors from rape and sexual abuse.

Until now, the Philippines has had one of the world’s lowest minimum ages of sexual consent, behind Nigeria’s age of 11, according to the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

Reuters reports that a joint 2015 study by UNICEF and the Center for Women’s Resources, a local non-governmental group, showed seven of 10 rape victims in the Philippines were children.

One in five aged 13 to 17 reported experiencing sexual violence, while one in 25 reported forced consummated sex during childhood, the study said.

Under the bill endorsed by Duterte, which is gender-neutral, any adult engaging in sexual contact with anyone 16 or under would be committing statutory rape, unless the age difference between them was three years or less and sex was proven to be consensual, and neither abusive nor exploitative.

The exemption does not apply if one of those involved was under 13.


Reuters article – Philippine leader approves bill raising sex consent age from 12 to 16 (Open access)


See more from MedicalBrief archives:


Violence and trauma in childhood accelerate puberty


Crippling mental health problems common in those sexually assaulted


Link between objectification of girls and aggression to them



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