Press Release
November 16, 2023

Bong Go calls on gov't to strengthen livelihood support for the poor as he provides aid to displaced workers in Guinobatan and Libon, Albay

Senator Christopher "Bong" Go said in a video message during his team's relief effort in Guinobatan and Libon, Albay on November 9 and 10, that advocating for more pro-poor programs remains his priority especially when it comes to livelihood support towards pandemic recovery.

"Always po ako, pro-poor programs at dapat po ay sikapin ng gobyerno na walang magutom na Pilipino. 'Yan po ang pakiusap ko parati sa executive," said Go.

"Kung meron kayong isusulong na batas, suportado ko po ito basta po makakatulong sa mahihirap po at hindi mapunta sa korapsyon ang pera," he stated.

Go's team coordinated with Guinobatan Mayor Paul Garcia and Libon Mayor Wilfredo "Das" Maronilla and provided snacks, masks, shirts, vitamins, and balls for basketball and volleyball to a total of 556 displaced workers at Guinobatan Plaza and Licom College Covered Court. There were also select recipients of shoes and mobile phones.

Furthermore, the recipients were also eligible for the Department of Labor and Employment's (DOLE) Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD) program.

Go then cited the findings from a study carried out by Pulse Asia Research Inc. from September 10 to 14. The results showed that 74 percent of surveyed individuals voiced concerns about the impact of inflation. The second most prominent concern, indicated by 49 percent of participants, revolved around the urgency of increasing workers' wages. Following closely, the creation of more job opportunities held the third spot with 27 percent.

In an effort to address the welfare of individuals residing in job-scarce rural areas, Go filed Senate Bill No. (SBN) 420. This proposed legislation aims to provide temporary job opportunities for eligible members of low-income rural households who are willing to engage in unskilled physical labor for a defined period if the bill becomes law.

Go, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, has also been advocating for the provision of accessible and quality healthcare services to all Filipinos, with a particular focus on remote areas. He emphasized that a healthy population will result to a more productive citizenry.

The senator has been supporting the construction of Super Health Centers nationwide to bring primary care services, medical consultation and early disease detection closer to communities in need.

Through the collective efforts of DOH, local government units, and fellow lawmakers, sufficient funds have been allocated under the Department of Health (DOH) for the construction of 307 Super Health Centers in 2022 and 322 in 2023. This includes seven in Albay province.

He also encouraged the public to seek the services of the Malasakit Center at Bicol Regional Training and Teaching Hospital in Legazpi City if they need assistance with their medical-related expenses.

Go is the principal author and sponsor of Republic Act 11463 or the Malasakit Centers Act of 2019, which institutionalized the Malasakit Centers program. To date, 159 operational centers have helped more than seven million Filipinos nationwide, according to the Department of Health (DOH).

"Sa mga pasyente, lapitan niyo lang ang Malasakit Center dahil para 'to sa inyo. Kung may hospital bill kayo, nandiyan ang mga ahensya ng gobyerno na tutulong para mabayaran ito," said Go.

Moreover, echoing President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos, Jr.'s priority of bringing specialized medical services closer to other parts of the country, Go highlighted that he has principally sponsored and is one of the authors of the Regional Specialty Centers Act.

The law mandates the establishment of Regional Specialty Centers within existing DOH regional hospitals. It stands as a testament to the commitment of the government to uplift the nation's health infrastructure and bring actual medical services closer to the Filipino people.

Go, vice chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance, supported the construction of multipurpose buildings in Ligao City, Oas and Polangui; rehabilitation of several roads in Camalig, Daraga, Jovellar, Legazpi City, Ligao City, Pio Duran and Rapu-Rapu; and rehabilitation of flood control systems in Malilipot, Camalig, Daraga, Guinobatan, Malinao, Manito, Oas and Polangui.

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