Ako Bicol Executive Director Alfredo Garbin has said that “hazing plague” requires unrelenting campaign following the reported hazing of a third year chemical engineering student which resulted in his untimely demise.
Adamson University student John Matthew Salilig was believed to be a victim of fraternity hazing. His body was found in Imus, Cavite.
In a statement, Garbin said that hazing is a crime, justice, social welfare, and mental health problem.
“I call upon the DOH, DSWD, DILG, and DOJ to take concerted and effective action against the plague of hazing that continues to spread among the Filipino youth and among our communities nationwide,” said Garbin.
“There are mental health and sociological conditions involved in the hazing plague. In much the same way that wars begin in the minds of men, hazing infects the hearts and minds of the Filipino youth who seek peer belonging and affirmation and those who have been desensitized to the physical harm hazing inflicts upon victims,” he added.
He also urged the the DOH and DSWD to implement at the barangay level mental health programs, including techniques specific on addressing physical violence behavior, consistent with the National Mental Health Program Act and the laws against hazing.
He also appealed to the Salilig family to not agree to any settlement or to even allow the criminals to talk with them for settlement and financial reparations
“These criminals must be arrested, tried in court, and sent to jail for murder and hazing and torture,” he said.
“Hazing, rape, stabbings, and gun violence take the lives of too many Filipino youths. It is time for an unrelenting campaign against these plagues and societal diseases rooted in distorted mental health complicated by apathy from residents of communities,” he also said.
Garbin is a member of Tau Gamma Phi Fraternity and the author of the Anti-Hazing Law of 2018.