PNP launches first all-female police station in Siquijor

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As part of efforts to uphold gender equality in all fields of social activity, the Philippine National Police (PNP) on Saturday made history with the launching of the first-ever municipal police station, which is ran by female police officers, on the island-province of Siquijor.

Police Regional Office 7 (Central Visayas) director, Brig. Gen. Debold Sinas, said the police station is operating in the Municipality of Maria on the island named as the “Mariang Pulis”.

“This move will strongly advance women empowerment in promoting public safety and security services at all levels of police units and offices in the region,” Sinas said.

The “Mariang Pulis” is now led by newly designated chief of police, Capt. Judith Besas.

The women-dominated police station follows a rich history of the municipality of Maria.

Long before the Spaniards came to Siquijor, a settlement known as “Kangminya,” named after a famous native woman, already existed. It was eventually renamed to “Maria” in honor of “Our Lady of Divine Providence”, which became the town’s patron saint.

Maria is a fifth-class municipality with a total land area of 53.37 square kilometers, which constitutes 15 percent of Siquijor’s total land area.

Prior to the launch, Maria Police Station was complimented by only six policewomen.

Col. Angela Rejano, Siquijor Police Provincial Office (SPPO) director, profiled all the assigned policewomen in the province and selected those who will undertake the capacity development training.

Rejano said they were trained on driving, shooting, arresting techniques, and other police operation and intervention procedures such as checkpoint, Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS), and first aid, among others.

She said the Maria Police Station is now operating in full capacity with 21 total police strength, the ideal police force for a Class C municipality.

“Having initiated this new concept of gender and development for policewomen in Siquijor, the Mariang Pulis signals the time to move forward in promoting the vision and mission of the PNP in creating an opportunity for women to strengthen their role in the context of policing in the law enforcement pillar,” Rejano said.

Earlier, the PNP- Highway Patrol Group (HPG) deployed a special unit composed of female motorcycle riders that will help their male counterparts in the flow of traffic on Edsa.

Brig. Gen. Eliseo Cruz, HPG director, said the deployment of female HPG officers forms part of their gender equality or women empowerment.

He said the team is composed of 20 policewomen, who are trained riders and traffic enforcement supervisors.

The HPG All-Women Patrollers/Traffic Supervisors’ Unit forms part of the 48 female cops who recently finished their training on motorcycle riding which started last year.

Cruz said despite being assigned on Edsa, the female riders are still not deputized to issue tickets but will be partnered with a male counterpart who is deputized by the Land Transportation Office and Metropolitan Manila Development Authority to issue citation tickets. (PNA)