Abstract

The study employs a Feminist Action Research approach to unravel the intricacies of violence against women in the context of gendered social arrangements with emphasis of such arrangement under the Duterte administration and the implementation of Oplan Tokhang in Bulacan. It centers on stories of women survivors left behind by their relatives killed in drug operations gathered through Psychological First Aid session and Human Rights Trainings. By analyzing these narratives, the research finds three micro-level articulations of violence against women in the context of Tokhang: (1) war on the poor (women); (2) palit-katawan (rape-for-freedom); and (3) palit-ulo (exchange-heads where the oppressed becomes the oppressor). Beyond suffering, the women’s stories also espouse a narrative of resilience in time of Tokhang. The study also demonstrates the effectiveness of Psychological First Aid by providing women with safe spaces to express their thoughts, hopes, and feelings.