Risa Hontiveros-Baraquel, born Ana Theresia Hontiveros, is a Filipino activist, journalist, and politician who is serving her second term as the party-list representative of the Akbayan Citizens’ Action Party to the Philippines’ House of Representatives since 2004. Having served as a journalist for ten years before venturing into politics, she is a recipient of the Kapisanan ng Mga Broadkaster ng Pilipinas’ Golden Dove Award for Best Female Newscaster.
She also earned a Nobel peace prize nomination for her work as chair the Government Panel’s Reciprocal Working Committee on Socio-Economic Reforms in the Peace Talks with the National Democratic Front from 1998 to 1999. She is the older sister of Journalist and Television Host Pia Hontiveros.
She has raised her profile in the UK, by making a formal complaint about a popular satirical British TV show Harry & Paul. This allegedly "racist" sketch depicts a wealthy southerner (played by Harry Enfield) who keeps a poor lethargic northerner (played by Paul Whitehouse) as a pet. This poor northerner is encouraged to mount the southerner’s Filipina maid. Risa Hontiveros described the September episode of Harry & Paul as "revolting and disgusting". This is only one of a series of sketches during the show’s run in which Harry is seen to treat Paul’s character as a dog or other family pet as an example how class and the north/south divide devalues anyone of a lower social status, be they northern or ethnic domestic staff.
In Hontiveros-Baraquel’s career as a politician and activist, she has been affiliated with a number of organizations and movements, including Coalition for Peace (served as Secretary-General from 1988 to 1992), National Peace Conference (serving on its Governing Council since 1990), Government Panel for Peace Talks with the National Democratic Front (chairing the Panel’s Reciprocal Working Committee on Socio-Economic Reforms from August 1998 to June 1999), Pandayan para sa Sosyalistang Pilipinas (Pandayan/Forge for a Socialist Philippines), a democratic socialist political organization (re-elected as Chairperson In August 2001), Pilipina, a socialist feminist organization, Amnesty International Pilipinas (member of the Board of Directors), Institute for Politics and Governance and Akbayan-Citizens Action Party (Executive Committee member).
Hontiveros-Baraquel currently serves as a member for the House Minority of the following Committees of the 14th Congress: Appropriations, Ethics and Privileges, Foreign Affairs, Good Government and Public Accountability, Health, Higher and Technical Education, Human Rights, Natural Resources, Peace, Reconciliation and Unity, People Participation, Rules, Trade and Industry and Women and Gender Equality
- Born : February 24, 1966
- Birth place : Manila, Philippines
- Nationality : Filipino
- Political party : Akbayan Citizens’ Action Party, Liberal Party
- Spouse : Francisco Baraquel Jr. (Deceased
- Relations : Television Journalist Pia Hontiveros (Sister)
- Children : Four (Not Named)
- Residence : Matandang Balara, Quezon City
- Alma mater : Ateneo de Manila University (BS Social Science, Cum Laude)
- Occupation : Activist
- Profession : Journalist
- Religion : Roman Catholic