Authors: Chad Patrick Osorio
This paper analyzes crime and justice in the aftermath of natural calamities in the Philippines. In particular, it zooms in on Tacloban City, one of the urban areas directly hit by Typhoon Haiyan, and notes how the national government failed to afford protection and decent standards of living for victims of the disaster, in contravention of its obligations both under the Constitution and international human rights laws. Relevant provisions under the Revised Penal Code are analyzed, as well as the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010 (Republic Act 10121). The author forwards that the implementation of public order through criminal justice should have been prioritized for humanitarian aid to be properly implemented, and recommends a revisit of the underlying principles of RA 10121. He proposes general policy modifications at the level of both local and national government in relation to disaster risk reduction, response and management, particularly promoting the idea of public order and welfare as twin complementary concepts in effective disaster relief.
Keywords: criminal justice disaster law climate change natural calamities policy analysis