PMA official vows to bolster mental health awareness among cadets

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 28 2019 08:43 PM

MANILA - The new cadet commandant of the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) on Saturday said his office will make sure caring for cadets' mental health will be a priority.

"[We are being proactive.] ’Pag pumunta ang kadete (sa ospital) we will investigate agad. We won’t wait for markings. We won’t just look at the cadets. Maaaring physiological ang kaniyang sakit. The mental state of our cadets are prime importance to us.," Brig. Gen. Romeo Brawner told reporters.

He said he also plans to strengthen the academy's counselling office. The PMA will also check for trauma among cadets, which could affect their mental health.

"Hopefully mawala na trauma nila, wala sila war shock kumbaga. Sometimes it could lead to violent tendencies," Brawner said.

Freshmen, he added, will be required to undergo counselling before they become upperclassmen, to become "empowered."

"We will make sure that the first class are empowered para ma-manage nila. Medyo nawala ’yun," Brawner said.

The PMA will also continue to do physical checks on its cadets to check if they have marks that could indicate hazing.

"If there are marks, this indicates there might have been maltreatment. ’Pag nakita ang marking we'll do an investigation," he said.

Following the death of PMA cadet Darwin Dormitorio, a string of suspected hazing incidents has surfaced.