In a recent meeting of the Regional Working Group (RWG) on the Comprehensive Social Benefit Program (CSBP), Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) - 8 Regional Director (RD) Karl Caesar R. Rimando said that the continued delivery of services proves that the government has kept the vow of President Rodrigo R. Duterte to care for the families of soldiers killed or wounded in action and of police personnel killed in operations.
During the RWG meeting on CSBP, different agencies reported on the implementation status and coordinated the processing of applications of beneficiary families.
Present in the RWG meeting were the heads or representatives of the Presidential Management Staff (PMS), Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Philippine Army, Philippine National Police (PNP), Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP), and National Police Commission (NAPOLCOM). The meeting presided by DILG-8 Assistant Regional Director (ARD) Darwin N. Bibar dwelt on the need for agencies to hasten the processing of benefits for families of uniformed personnel.
Special Financial Assistance
The Presidential Management Staff (PMS) reported that a total of 43 legal dependents of 49 personnel Killed in Action (KIA), nine of 15 Killed in Police Operations (KIPO), and nine of 10 Civilian Active Auxiliary (CAA) units have received the Special Financial Assistance (SFA) from President Duterte. Meanwhile, 25 of 35 Wounded in Police Operations, 179 of 212 Wounded in Action and nine of 10 CAAs Wounded in Action have likewise received the SFA.
Employment and Livelihood
From 2017, designated beneficiaries of 13 soldiers, one CAA KIA, three KIPO, and 3 families of soldiers Wounded in Action (WIA) were able to avail of employment in government agencies. Meanwhile, 14 families signed waivers for referral to other agencies or local government units (LGUs), endorsed to the Central Office of DPWH and PMS-Regional Field Unit (RFU) 8, two applications are ongoing and one family has not been contacted as they went home to Mindanao.
On the other hand, the Capacity Building Training (CBT) Cluster reported that 17 beneficiaries availed of training by DTI on entrepreneurship, business licensing, or basic accounting; four beneficiaries of the BSP training on financial literacy; and one from TESDA on driving. Once the beneficiaries complete the training of the three agencies, a joint certificate will be issued by the three agencies.
The Philippine Army provided financial assistance in the amount of P80,000 from its Funeral Service Fund; P40,000 from the 8ID SMT Fund; P50,000 from Armed Forces & Police Mutual Benefit Association, Incorporated (AFPMBAI) as well as processed the P337,000 SFA for the family of a serviceman who was killed in an armed encounter in the first quarter of 2021. In addition to receiving a pension, the qualified dependents will be granted Armed Forces of the Philippines Education Benefit (AFPEBSO) Scholarship and shall receive a further P75,000 from Philippine Army Finance Center Producers Integrated Cooperative (PAFCPIC) after processing of the documents by the Liaison Office of the 8th Infantry Division for Pension.
Aside from free hospitalization, the three soldiers wounded in action in the first quarter of 2021 received Cash Assistance from their respective units, and their documents have been submitted to the Philippine Army Headquarters for SFA and Housing Assistance.
On the other hand, of the 14 police personnel killed in actual operations, two beneficiaries have been reimbursed P10,000 each for education expenses, five families have not yet applied for scholarship benefits, scholarship benefits are not applicable to two families, and one has not renewed.
Family members of 13 personnel KIA/KIPO and 33 WIA/WIPO have availed of Hospitalization/Maintenance Medicine and other health services. Likewise, 450 family members have been enrolled in PhilHealth.
Application of 36 legal dependents have been completed or granted, 107 are on process while one family has not pursued the housing benefit due to them. Families were given the option to avail of a new housing unit in AFP-PNP Housing Projects, accept financial assistance worth P450,000 in the construction of a housing unit in the beneficiaries’ own lot; or avail of financial assistance worth P100,000 for improvement of an existing housing unit.
All six households that were endorsed in 2018 were registered in the Modified Conditional Cash Transfer (MCCT). In 2019, case assessment revealed that out of 46 individuals endorsed to MCCT, only six qualified to be registered in the program due to their socioeconomic status.
DSWD reported that presently there has been no additional registration for KIA and KIPO. Per instruction of their national program management, all registrations shall be coursed through the regular conditional cash transfer program. No additional KIA and KIPO shall be added to the MCCT due to the migration of the MCCT clients to Pantawid Pamilya Information System (PPIS). Instead, future registration shall be coursed through the agency PPIS. All activities in MCCT are based on the Kilos Unlad framework. The target of the modified conditional cash transfer is to provide a support services intervention (SSI) grant to all L3 targets for 2021. The clients shall be re-assessed and provided with the livelihood intervention that fits their current economic needs to ensure sustainable development within the household.
As head of the RWG, RD Rimando assured that the DILG will closely monitor the facilitation of assistance to the uniformed personnel and their dependents. The program was expanded to include members of CAA groups, as well as members of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, Bureau of Fire Protection, and the Coast Guard by virtue of Executive Order No. 110 on “Institutionalizing the Comprehensive Social Benefits Program” issued in April 2020.