Etta Rosales
Etta Rosales is a Filipino
Filipino people
The Filipino people or Filipinos are an Austronesian ethnic group native to the islands of the Philippines. There are about 92 million Filipinos in the Philippines, and about 11 million living outside the Philippines ....

Activism consists of intentional efforts to bring about social, political, economic, or environmental change. Activism can take a wide range of forms from writing letters to newspapers or politicians, political campaigning, economic activism such as boycotts or preferentially patronizing...

, teacher and politician who has served three terms as the party-list representative of the Akbayan Citizens' Action Party
Akbayan Citizens' Action Party
The Akbayan Citizens' Action Party or AKBAYAN is a registered national political party representing marginalized sectors in the Philippines. Akbayan first participated in the partylist elections in the House of Representatives in the 1998 National Elections and won one seat. The first...

 to the Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

' House of Representatives
House of Representatives of the Philippines
The House of Representatives of the Philippines is the lower chamber of the...

 from the 11th-
11th Congress of the Philippines
The Eleventh Congress of the Philippines is the meeting of the national legislature of the Republic of the Philippines, composed of the Philippine Senate and House of Representatives...

14th Congress
13th Congress of the Philippines
The Thirteenth Congress of the Philippines was the meeting of the national legislature of the Republic of the Philippines, composed of the Philippine Senate and House of Representatives...

 (1998-2007). She is currently the Chairperson of the Commission on Human Rights of the Republic of the Philippines.

She is a well-known defender of human rights
Human rights
Human rights are "commonly understood as inalienable fundamental rights to which a person is inherently entitled simply because she or he is a human being." Human rights are thus conceived as universal and egalitarian . These rights may exist as natural rights or as legal rights, in both national...

 and was instrumental in instituting a class action suit in the Hawaii District Court which resulted in the only judgment holding the former dictator Ferdinand E. Marcos liable for gross human rights violations committed during his incumbency, which judgment was partially executed in 2011. She herself is a victim of human rights violations by the Marcos regime.

As an activist, she founded the leftist
Left-wing politics
In politics, Left, left-wing and leftist generally refer to support for social change to create a more egalitarian society...

 and now party-list Alliance of Concerned Teacher (ACT)
Alliance of Concerned Teachers
The Alliance of Concerned Teachers is a progressive, militant and nationalist organization of teachers, academic non-teaching personnel and non-academic non-teaching personnel established on June 26, 1982 in the Philippines...

. She was also the chairperson of Partido ng Bayan.

Rosales left ACT sometime before 1998. After her departure from ACT, she joined Akbayan. She was elected as a congresswoman for that party list from 1998-2007.

After serving in Congress for three terms, she served as Co-Chairperson of the Philippine Coalition for the International Criminal Court and founded Building Bridges for Peace, a multi-sectoral initiative to secure land rights and security for agrarian rform and indigenous communities through dialogue. In 2010, she was the possible choice of President
President of the Philippines
The President of the Philippines is the head of state and head of government of the Philippines. The president leads the executive branch of the Philippine government and is the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines...

 Benigno S. Aquino III to head the country's Commission on Human Rights
Commission on Human Rights (Philippines)
The Commission on Human Rights is an independent office created by the Constitution of the Philippines, with the primary function of investigating all forms of human rights violations involving civil and political rights in the Philippines....

 as a replacement to Leila De Lima
Leila De Lima
Leila Magistrado De Lima is the secretary of Philippine Department of Justice under the Administration of President Noynoy Aquino...

, who became the Justice Secretary
Department of Justice (Philippines)
The Department of Justice , abbreviated as DOJ, is the executive department of the Philippine government responsible for upholding the rule of law in the Philippines...

 of the country. Many left-wing organizations, such as Karapatan
Karapatan, which translates as rights, is a human rights non-governmental organization in the Philippines. The full name of the group is KARAPATAN: Alliance for the Advancement of People's Rights.-History:...

 and the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) (a group she was formerly aligned with), protested her appointment, stating that she was unfit for the position. Rosales is a known critic of the regime of Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo
Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo is a Filipino politician who served as the 14th President of the Philippines from 2001 to 2010, as the 12th Vice President of the Philippines from 1998 to 2001, and is currently a member of the House of Representatives representing the 2nd District of Pampanga...

 and has often led her party list in protests in opposition to it. Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel, a colleague in Akbayan, welcomed her appointment. She was appointed Commission on Human Rights Chairperson by Aquino and took her oath before Chief Justice Renato Corona on September 1, 2010. As CHR Chairperson, she also serves as Chairperson of the Southeast Asia National Human Rights Institutions Forum, the regional network of national human rights institutions in ASEAN.
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