Press Release
November 16, 2023

Bong Go assists displaced workers in Leon, Iloilo; eyes more employment and livelihood opportunities for the underprivileged

The outreach team of Senator Christopher "Bong" Go collaborated with officials of the Municipality of Leon, Iloilo, including Congressman Mike Gorriceta and Mayor Virgilio Teruel, to deliver aid to 180 workers who have lost their jobs. The distribution was conducted at Barangay Talacu-an covered gymnasium on Tuesday, November 14.

Go's team distributed snacks and shirts to all identified disadvantaged workers, while select recipients received balls for basketball and volleyball from the senator.

Separately, qualified beneficiaries also received temporary employment from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) through its Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD). The TUPAD program provides opportunities to individuals facing economic hardships and is designed to provide emergency employment for displaced workers, underemployed, and seasonal laborers.

"Nakikiusap po ako sa kapwa ko lingkod bayan na focus tayo sa pagbibigay ng trabaho sa ating mga kababayan. Lalo na po yung mga walang-wala at malubhang naapektuhan ng pandemya," Go urged.

Meanwhile, Go has filed Senate Bill No. (SBN) 420, which aims to establish a system for providing short-term employment to eligible individuals from underprivileged households in rural regions. Within the framework of this proposed measure, a program called the Rural Employment Assistance Program (REAP) would be created under DOLE.

If enacted into law, the primary objective of REAP is to offer temporary employment opportunities to individuals who meet the criteria of being economically disadvantaged, impoverished, displaced, or seasonal workers.

Go, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, encouraged those with health issues to seek the services of the four Malasakit Centers in the province.

Malasakit Centers bring together representatives from the Department of Health (DOH), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth), and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO). These one-stop shops aim to support impoverished patients in reducing their hospital costs to the least possible amount.

The Malasakit Centers program was initiated by Go in 2018 and was later institutionalized through the Malasakit Centers Act of 2019, which he principally authored and sponsored.

The two Malasakit Centers in Iloilo City are located at West Visayas State University Medical Center and Western Visayas Medical Center. Other Malasakit Centers in the province are located at Don Jose S. Monfort Medical Center Extension Hospital in Barotac Nuevo, and Western Visayas Sanitarium, and General Hospital in Santa Barbara.

As of now, 159 Malasakit Centers are operational across the country, poised to assist with patients' medical expenses. The DOH reported that the Malasakit Center program has already provided aid to more than ten million Filipinos.

To further support the development of the province, Go, vice chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance, also supported several initiatives in the province, such as the construction of multipurpose buildings in Barotac Viejo, completion of various barangay health stations throughout Iloilo City and the construction of a multipurpose building in the Iloilo City Public Market.

Other major initiatives he supported include the concreting or construction of roads in Badiangan, Banate, Carles, Dumangas, Lemery, Miag-ao, and Sara; completion of the barangay health stations in Leon; construction of a flood control system in Balasan; construction of a seawall in Banate; construction of the legislative building complete with facilities in San Dionisio; and improvement of the public parks in Dueñas.


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