Sen. Robin Padilla’s Bill Declaring National Hijab Day on Feb. 1 Gets Senate Nod on Third Reading

Senate President Juan Miguel ‘Migz’ F. Zubiri. (Credit: Joseph Vidal / Senate PRIB)

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With a vote of 21-0-0, the Senate on Monday approved on third and final reading a bill authored and sponsored by Sen. Robinhood “Robin” C. Padilla, declaring February 1 as the National Day of Awareness on the Hijab and other Traditional Garments and Attire.

Padilla thanked his colleagues for their support for Senate Bill (SB) No. 1410, which he said will go a long way in promoting understanding among cultures, traditions, and faiths.


“Napaka espesyal po ng araw na ito hindi lamang po para sa ating mga kapatid na Muslim kung hindi para sa lahat ng Pilipinong naghahangad ng mas malalim na pag-unawa sa pagkakaiba ng kultura, tradisyon, at pananampalataya (This is a special day not only for our Muslim brethren but also for all Filipinos who hope for a deeper understanding among cultures, traditions and faiths),” he said after the vote.

“Sa ating paghahangad ng isang lipunang walang diskriminasyon, napakahalagang kilalanin at harapin – hindi takasan at iwasan – ang mga partikular na hamon na kinakaharap ng isang komunidad (In our efforts towards a society where there is no discrimination, it is important to face and not escape the challenges that face our community),” he added.

Hijab-wearing students in Banguingui Municipality, Tongkil Islands, Sulu. (Photo: SDN — SciTech and Digital News)

For his part, Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri congratulated Padilla, saying this “is your first measure as senator.”

Padilla’s S.B. No. 1410 on hijab honors diversity and awareness

Chaired by Padilla, the Senate Committees on Cultural Communities and Muslim Affairs and Women, Children, Family Relations and Gender Equality prepared S.B. No. 1410.

It upholds the voluntary exercise of religious profession and worship, free from coercion or discrimination.

“To promote diversity, awareness and tolerance of religious and cultural beliefs expressed through the wearing of indigenous clothing, head garments and coverings, such as but not limited to hijab, sinulog and tapis. February 1st is hereby declared as the ‘National Day for Awareness on the Hijab and Other Traditional Garments and Attire,'” the bill said.

However, the bill also makes it clear that there is no requirement to wear or not to wear a particular attire, garment or clothing.

S.B. No. 1410 is a substitute for S.B. No. 1272, which Padilla filed to declare February 1 as National Hijab Day “to recognize the millions of Muslim women around the world, and in the Philippines especially, who choose to wear the hijab and embody a life of modesty. It likewise aims to foster cultural understanding and inclusivity in our country.”

In filing the bill, Padilla stressed the need to end discrimination especially against Muslim women through “awareness, education and empowerment.” Also, he noted his bill aims to counter the “colonial mentality” where the hijab symbolizes the oppression of women. (/)


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