Senator Leila M. de Lima has underscored the need for social workers, non-government organizations and institutions in working together to raise awareness and improve the living standards of poor Filipino families, especially those in rural areas.
As the nation observes the Social Welfare Week which kicked off last Nov. 25, De Lima also encouraged every Filipino to show compassion to poor families, especially those who have been neglected or forgotten due to government’s inaction or apathy.
“Bilang mga lingkod-bayan at mamamayan, hangga’t mayroon pa ring mga gurong tumatawid ng mga ilog at bundok para makapagturo sa mga maralita, hangga’t may mga batang nakikipagpatintero sa mga sasakyan sa kalsada para lamang mamalimos at magtinda,
“Hangga’t may mga kababayan tayong kapos pa rin ang inihahaing pagkain para sa pamilya sa kabila ng doble-kayod na pagsasaka, pangingisda at pamamasada, nagpapatuloy ang ating obligasyon na siguruhing makahabol at sa kalauna’y makasabay sa pag-unlad ang mga matagal nang naaapi at naisasantabi,” she said.
Observed from Nov. 25 to Dec. 1 every year by virtue of Proclamation No. 1205, Social Welfare Week highlights the responsibility of social workers and other groups and individuals engaged in social-economic development to enhance their efforts in creating a society “that attains the full economic and social development of our people.”
De Lima, who chairs the Senate Committee on Social Justice, Welfare and Rural Development, lamented that the citizenry has witnessed how the Duterte regime miserably failed the Filipino people with its broken promises for the past three years.
“Instead of uplifting the plight of our poor countrymen, they were victimized by violence and killings, and were continuously taken for a ride by the plunderers, thieves, and traitors in government to further propel themselves to power,” she said.
As part of her effort to help improve the plight of the poor, the lady Senator from Bicol assured that she will closely monitor the strict implementation of recent laws that seek to improve services to sectors which have long been neglected by authorities.
“I am pushing for legislative measures that seek to improve our services to sectors that have long been neglected by authorities on top of those already enacted into law, such as the Magna Carta of the Poor Act, the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) Act, the National Commission of Senior Citizens Act and the Community-Based Monitoring System Act,” she said.
“With these measures, and with the help of our social workers, non-government organizations and institutions, let us continue to work hand in hand to provide more and better opportunities that will redound to inclusive growth, rising standards of living and lasting national development that will benefit all,” she added.
The Magna Carta of the Poor Act mandates the government to establish a system of “progressive realization” to provide the requirements and opportunities for the full enjoyment of the fundamental rights of the poor while the 4Ps Law institutionalizes the 4Ps as one of the government’s regular anti-poverty programs for the poor.
Meanwhile, the National Commission of Senior Citizens Act provides a body composed of heads of different government agencies dedicated to handle the concerns of senior citizens while the Community-Based Monitoring System Act institutionalizes a Community-Based Monitoring System to provide field-based data in designing the government’s anti-poverty programs. (30)