The Taipei Women’s Rescue Foundation yesterday urged the government to pass legislation to prevent stalking as soon as possible to care for and protect victims.
Several recent cases that began with stalking have led to death or injury because they were not handled properly, the foundation said in a statement.
A special law is needed to deal with cases of stalking, it said, adding that regulation should not be limited to the Act of Gender Equality in Employment (性別工作平等法), the Gender Equity Education Act (性別平等教育法) or the Sexual Harassment Prevention Act (性騷擾防治法).
Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times
The National Police Agency has expressed concern that by including within the scope of stalking a range of behaviors from neighbors filing reports on each other to debt disputes, journalists taking photographs of subjects by following them and the behavior of so-called “haters” online, different versions of an anti-stalking bill proposed by lawmakers could make the police susceptible to being seen as having too much power, the foundation said.
Having a law that clearly defines stalking behavior and establishes standard operating procedures could help resolve those doubts, it said.
A warning system should be established to allow police to intervene early to prevent tragedies, it said, adding that the law should be expanded to cover a larger segment of the population.
Separately, the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) legislative caucus also called for the enactment of an anti-stalking bill as soon as possible, adding that the Executive Yuan should propose its own version of the bill to be reviewed by the Legislative Yuan.
Nearly 20,000 stalking cases are recorded each year, KMT Legislator Cheng Li-wun (鄭麗文) told a news conference in Taipei, adding that such incidents pose a serious threat to women.
The statements by the foundation and the KMT caucus come after a woman in Pingtung County surnamed Tseng (曾) was allegedly abducted and killed by a man surnamed Huang (黃).
Tseng had filed multiple police reports against Huang for alleged harassment and stalking.
Police need laws that allow them to intervene early on, KMT Legislator Yeh Yu-lan (葉毓蘭) said.
Lawmakers have proposed 15 versions of an anti-stalking bill, KMT Legislator Lin Szu-ming (林思銘) said, urging the Executive Yuan to quickly submit its own version for review by the legislature’s Internal Administration Committee.
The proposed legislation must pass this legislative session, said Lin, who is a coconvener of the committee, adding that the committee is to continue reviewing proposed provisions for the bill on Thursday.
Additional reporting by Lin Liang-sheng and CNA
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