DOLE-Bicol regional director Joel M. Gonzales (PNA file photo)
LEGAZPI CITY – More than 11,000 workers in Bicol Region affected by the enhanced community quarantine in Luzon amid the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) crisis, have each received a PHP3,100 cash assistance from the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), an official said on Wednesday.
The financial benefit was given under the agency’s emergency livelihood program “Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Worker #Barangay ko, Bahay Ko (TUPAD #BKBK) Disinfecting/Sanitation Project”.
DOLE-Bicol regional director Joel Gonzales said as of April 7, the cash assistance has been given to at least 11,804 informal sector workers across the region after they have completed their duty to sanitize and disinfect their houses and immediate vicinity.
“We are glad to announce that we have initially disbursed an amount of PHP40.7-million to our affected beneficiaries in the informal sector. The accelerated release of assistance is made possible with the help of local government units (LGUs) which also function as our accredited co-partner (ACP) for this livelihood program,” he said.
Gonzales said under the TUPAD #BKBK project, the LGUs or barangays are in charge of submitting the requirements which include the list of beneficiaries.
Once DOLE-Bicol has processed the appropriate documents and accepted the barangay’s application to avail of the program, the beneficiaries can start the clean-up drive in their immediate surroundings and thorough sanitization of their homes for 10 days.
“A beneficiary of TUPAD #BKBK will be receiving a financial assistance amounting to PHP3,100. The computation will be PHP310 per day X 10 days of disinfection/ sanitization activity in one’s home or surrounding,” Gonzales said.
The payment is made either via remittance center or coursed through the LGU or barangay.
“As the program is intended for affected workers in the informal sector, qualified persons include those who are self-employed and underemployed whose income has been badly affected by the enhanced community quarantine. Who are they? They are the ambulant vendors, ‘padyak’, tricycle and jeepney drivers, fishermen, farmers, barbers, carpenters, construction workers, helpers who do not have employers,” Gonzales said.
He said, however, that employees and elected officials of the government are not qualified under the program.
Gonzales also said DOLE-Bicol is gearing up to process a huge volume of documents as more barangays continue to submit their applications for the program.
He said their office hopes to help all the displaced workers while the quarantine continues.
“We are ready to provide the necessary support through our programs in the hope that we can help cushion the impact of ECQ to thousands of displaced workers,” he added.
TUPAD #BKBK is a community-based package of assistance that provides temporary wage employment for displaced workers, underemployed and self-employed.
It is created as an immediate response to help the informal sector workers who have temporarily lost their job or source of income following the ECQ due to the Covid-19 pandemic. (PNA)
Photo Credit: Philippine News Agency