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The Institute for Labor Studies (ILS) through its Gender and Development (GAD) Committee kicked off its month-long celebration of the International Women’s Month with a screening of the 2016 film “Hidden Figures” last 8 March 2023.

The biographical movie tackled the lives and successes of three African American professional women in the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), exposing the discrimination they experienced in their jobs. The filmshowing was followed by a brownbag session among its employees and on-the-job trainees where GAD Chairperson Franchesca Rose S. Castillo also delivered her message: “We must not stop striving for equality in the society where everyone can be their true selves.”

The day’s activities also included a visit to Casa Manila museum during which the employees learned that women in the Spanish period were not allowed to eat with the men of the household.

The ILS-GAD also decorated the office wall with a photo exhibit of pioneering Filipinas in the fields of politics, entertainment and sports, alongside a customizable sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression (SOGIE) ID frame.

In her opening remarks, ILS Deputy Executive Director Mary Grace Riguer-Teodosio acknowledged the consistent commitment of its employees to advocate for women’s rights and concerns, specially for women’s participation in the labor force.

The Institute adopted the  Philippine Commission on Women’s theme for the celebration nationwide: WE for gender equality and inclusive society, along with the official hashtag #WEcanbeEquAll.

The theme is in consonance with the Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028, which highlights that “growth must be inclusive, building an environment that provides equal opportunities to all Filipinos.”