Press Release
March 1, 2016


PAMPANGA--Solo parents found a partner in Sen. Grace Poe after the leading presidential candidate said they should be included in the government's Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program aimed at helping poor families.

In a campaign sortie in San Fernando, Pampanga, Poe said the government must make sure that indigent solo parents are protected and accorded the same benefits under the law.

"Sa ating mga nanay, mga tatay na single mothers o single fathers, importante talaga sa ating batas ang mabigyan kayo ng proteksyon para sa inyong pamilya at sa inyong anak. Layunin namin ni Senator Chiz na pagaanin ang inyong mga dala-dalang mga obligasyon," Poe said.

Solo parents make up about 14 percent of the population or about 13.9 million Filipinos, according to a 2011 report by the Department of Health (DOH) and the University of the Philippines-National Institute for Health (UP-NIH), the latest available statistic on the subject.

Poe said including poor solo parents in a modified CCT would help lessen their financial burden.

The government's modified CCT covers "families in need of special protection" such as those displaced by natural calamities, street families, itinerant indigenous families, and families with members who are disabled, sick with a terminal ailment or are victims of human trafficking and child labor.

Poe said the local government units (LGUs) can assist the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), the lead agency for implementing the anti-poverty program, in gathering eligible constituents, including solo parents, who may qualify for the CCT.

"Bakit naman natin paparusahan ang mga walang partner? Kailangan basta may bata, mayroon kayong inaalagaan at kinakailangan ng tulong ay masama natin hangga't maaari," Poe said in a forum where she was asked by a single mother why solo parents are not included in the CCT.

"Kailangan natin ire-evaluate kung sinong mga puwedeng masama diyan. Kung ikaw yung maliit ang kita at kailangan mo ng karagdagan ay masasama ka," the senator said.

To be a CCT beneficiary, a household must be tagged as poor based on the National Household Targeting System for Poverty Reduction, and must either have children aged 0-18 or have a household member who is pregnant at the time of the enumeration.

Parents are required to undergo responsible family development sessions, according to the DSWD, which selects CCT beneficiaries.

More than cash grants, Poe said it is also important to give poor Filipino parents easy and affordable access to quality public health care.

"Ang gusto namin, libreng pananghalian sa lahat ng public elementary schools para sa mga bata dahil malaking bawas na 'yon. Importante rin ang health care lalung-lalo na sa ating mga mahihirap. Kailangan 'yung mga bata napapa-check-up regularly," said Poe, whose first enacted legislation provides free lunches to public elementary students.

Poe, joined by her running mate Sen. Chiz Escudero and senatorial bets from Partido Galing at Puso, held consultations and school visits in Pampanga before a rally Tuesday afternoon.

News Latest News Feed