The European Union provides support to the penitentiary system to face COVID-19
In its commitment to support justice sector reform in the Philippines, the European Union (EU) through the Governance in Justice (GoJust) Programme is providing a PhP 5.6 M worth bus unit to the Quezon City Jail. The bus will be used to transport Persons Deprived of Liberty positive for COVID-19 to designated quarantine facilities to contain the spread of the virus in jails.
The EU also distributed (almost PhP 400,000 worth of) supplies of personal protective equipment (PPE) to the Philippine National Police and the justice sector media organizations in the DOJ, such as the Justice and Court Reporters’ Association (JUCRA) and the Justice Reporters’ Association (JUROR), as well as the Foreign Correspondents Association of the Philippines (FOCAP), Philippine Center for Photojournalism (PCP). PPEs to be distributed include face masks and face shields that will help policemen and journalists, considered as frontliners, to pursue their duties to deliver essential and credible information to the public amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The assistance package reaffirms the European Union’s commitment to enable the justice sector to address the needs of the court and penitentiary systems, especially during this pandemic,” according to Counsellor Enrico Strampelli, Head of Cooperation of the European Delegation to the Philippines, as he led the turnover.
“The BJMP thanks the European Union for its committed support to our country’s justice reform initiatives, through the GoJust cooperation. The new bus the EU donated for Quezon City Jail will augment our lift capability,” said Jail Director Allan S. Iral, Chief of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology.
It also complements other assistance provided by the EU such as PHP 50 million in relief distribution to vulnerable communities, a top up of PHP 17 million for the EU funded program on Enhanced Biosecurity in South East Asia in order to better address pandemics, and the PHP 1.1 billion provided to strengthen the WHO’s COVID-19 response in 8 ASEAN countries.
The Governance in Justice (GOJUST) Programme is funded by the European Union (EU) with a value of over PHP900M.
GOJUST works primarily with the key justice sector institutions (Supreme Court, Department of Justice and Department of the Interior and Local Government) to 1) strengthen sector coordination and policy making, 2) creating space for reform implementation through decongestion and automation, and 3) generating resources for reform implementation through the improvement of administrative and financial management. The Programme runs from 2016 to September 2020.