DSWD Sec. Taguiwalo welcomes stronger laws on disaster response through the ‘Children’s Emergency Relief and Protection Act’

  • February 28, 2017

QUEZON CITY, Feb. 28 - Following the recent disasters that struck the country last year and the first months of 2017, Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Judy M. Taguiwalo reiterated the standing need for all national and local government offices to provide adequate and timely response  and ensure the safety of civilians, especially children who are particularly vulnerable during calamities and emergency situations.

“Situations such as disasters, calamities, armed conflicts and other civil disturbances increase the vulnerability of children to various forms of abuse, neglect, cruelty and violence. The lack of proper implementation of policies and programs for children during emergency situations has grave effects on the normal development of children, and may have lasting repercussions that can last into their adulthood,” the Secretary said.

Recognizing the need to strengthen and improve the implementation of disaster risk reduction and management (DRRM) laws and policies, the Department will lead the signing of the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Republic Act (RA) No. 10821 or the ‘Children’s Emergency Relief and Protection Act’ this February 28, 2017 at the DSWD New Auditorium.

RA 10821, which was signed on May 18, 2016, mandates national and local government agencies to establish and implement a Comprehensive Emergency Program that will prioritize the protection of children and pregnant and lactating mothers during and after emergencies and disaster situations.

The law features stronger measures to ensure the safety and security of children affected by disasters and calamities, such as:

  • Establishment of child and women-friendly transitional shelters for orphaned, separated, and unaccompanied children;
  • Heightened surveillance against child trafficking, other acts of violence/abuse against children especially in the aftermath of disasters;
  • Development of a system for the restoration and reconstruction of civil documents for children and their families that have been destroyed or declared lost or missing during a disaster or calamity;
  • Promotion and conduct of child-responsive training programs for community and barangay leaders, school personnel, rescuers and other disaster responders;
  • Improving the standards and guidelines to trace and reunify orphaned, unaccompanied, or separated children to their families or relatives;
  • Increased participation of children in disaster risk reduction (DRR) planning and post-disaster needs assessments;
  • Ensure the proper identification and establishment of safe evacuation centers to limit the use of schools and child development centers as evacuation centers during calamities and disasters;
  • Improving the system of data gathering, monitoring and reporting in a disaster situation to better understand and deliver the specific and nutritional needs of newborn babies, children, pregnant and lactating mothers.

Aside from the DSWD, the IRR will be signed by the heads of agencies from the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), Department of Education (DepEd), Department of National Defense (DND), Department of Health (DOH), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Office of Civil Defense (OCD), Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), Philippine National Police (PNP), Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), National Housing Authority (NHA), and Council for the Welfare of Children (CWC).

“Through this law, we can increase the accountability of the local and the national government to communities, especially during disaster or calamity situations. The law will also establish standards to improve the protection and care of children in disaster situations and ensure that their rights are respected and secured,” Sec. Taguiwalo added.

Lastly, the Secretary also reminded the public that disaster risk reduction, response, and management processes involve the collective action between the public and the government.

“One of the keys to the proper enactment of this law is to empower the public and encourage their involvement in crafting and implementing DRRM policies and programs that can help improve the ability of Filipino communities to mitigate the effects of calamities and disasters and promote resiliency. We can save more lives if we work in solidarity with each other,” Sec. Taguiwalo said. (DSWD)

Other News

Diokno highlights the role of fiscal policy in DuterteNomics part 2
  • April 27, 2017
MANILA, April 27 -- On April 25, Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Secretary Benjamin E. Diokno once again joined senior officials of the national government at the Conrad Hotel in Pasay City for “Dutertenomics II”, a rerun of the forum “Dutertenomics” organized by the Department of Finance (DOF) and the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO) held at the same venue last April 18, 2017. Similar to Dutertenomics I, the second forum dealt on the economic policies and development blueprint of President Rodrigo Duterte. This time, however, delegates of the foreign m...Read more
Projects registered with BOI increase over 30% in the first 4 months of 2017
  • April 27, 2017
MAKATI CITY, April 27 -- Preliminary estimates of investment figures approved by the Philippine Board of Investments (BOI) in the first four months of 2017 reached P154 billion. DTI Secretary and BOI Chair Ramon M. Lopez said the figure is tracking an increase of over 30 percent compared to last year over the same period, which registered P117.2 billion. Projects registered with the agency during the period grew to 194, or an increase of 92 percent from the 101 projects registered in the same frame in 2016. These projects are expected to generate 46,018 new jobs once operational—an ...Read more
DPWH to repair 8 roads this weekend
  • April 27, 2017
MANILA, April 27 -- Motorists are advised that the Department of Public Works and Highways-National Capital Region (DPWH-NCR) will resume weekend road repair and reblocking on eight road sections in the cities of Quezon, Makati, Pasig, and Valenzuela. DPWH-NCR Director Melvin B. Navarro said repairs will be undertaken starting at 11 am on Friday, April 28, 2017 at the second lane, southbound direction of Epifanio delos Santos Avenue from Roosevelt Avenue to Quezon Avenue in Quezon City; along southbound direction of C5 before Lanuza Avenue, Pasig City and from Makati/Pasig Boundary to ...Read more
Deadline for submission of SSS-loan restructuring program (LRP) application today
  • April 27, 2017
QUEZON CITY, April 27 -- To cut the waiting time and accommodate all applicants, the Social Security System (SSS) will only accept and stamp Loan Restructuring Program (LRP) applications subject to its evaluation and approval at a later time. The change in the procedure is due to the influx of members going to branches to beat the deadline for the submission of LRP applications today. Applications will be accepted by SSS branches and members will be notified via text when they can claim their approval slip. Members can only pay once they get their approval slip. SSS branches in Manila, ...Read more