Cayetano calls for more gov’t support for abandonedchildren

July 8, 2013 12:05 am 

By Jelly Musico

MANILA, July 7 (PNA) -– Sen. Alan Peter Cayetano has filed two bills calling for more government support for abandoned, orphaned and neglected children.

Cayetano filed Senate bill No. 91, or the Welfare and Protection of the Orphaned, Abandoned, Neglected and Voluntarily Committed Children Bill and SB No. 92 or the Orphan Trust Fund Bill to reinforce the state’s capacity to attend to the needs of the often neglected sector of society.

“Though there are laws which provide care and assistance to children, we need to strengthen mechanisms in order to deliver assistance to those neglected children who become victims of poverty caused by problems of high prices, lack of jobs, and insufficient income," said Cayetano.

Cayetano said SB 91 provides health insurance, hospitalization support, and annual medical and dental check-ups for orphaned, abandoned, neglected and voluntarily committed children.

“These would help ensure the maximum survival and development as well as the optimum health of the orphaned, abandoned, neglected or voluntary committed child and provide him or her sufficient flexibility to explore all his God-given abilities and develop them to become productive members of society,” he said.

Cayetano cited a study conducted by the UNICEF indicating that there are 1.8 million orphans in the Philippines in 2011.

Also, according to the National Statistical Coordination Board, there are 2,327 neglected and 884 abandoned children in the country.

He underlined the need to create equal opportunity for all children “with sound minds and healthy bodies."

”Our country's orphaned, abandoned, neglected or voluntary committed children will be on the same footing as other children with parents or family members who have the ability to realize their personal dreams in life and become productive citizens of their country,” he stressed.

Senate Bill No. 92, or the Orphan Trust Fund Bill, aims to provide for a trust fund account for each orphaned, abandoned, neglected or voluntary committed child under DSWD-accredited child caring institutions and care centers which the government has to fund by regularly depositing a specified amount for each of the trust fund account.

The trust fund account matures when the orphaned, abandoned, neglected or voluntary committed minor reaches the age of majority, and will provide him or her some seed money in the future.

Cayetano said by taking care of the youth and making sure that they become contributing members of society is another step towards making the poor families feel the economic growth.

Others bill filed by Cayetano are the Freedom of information act, amendments to the Anti-Cybercrime Act of 2012, a bill decriminalizing libel, the Special Needs Fund for Children Bill, the Uniformed Personnel Bill, additional support for Educators in Basic Education Bill, and the Iskolar ng Bayan Bill.

The senator emphasized he will push hard for the majority coalition in the Senate to prioritize measures such as these in order for families to feel the benefits of our economic growth.

He is also set to file several other measures that will address PTK (Presyo – prices, Trabaho –job , Kita- income) in the coming weeks. (PNA)

HBC/JFM

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