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Informal workers should be prioritized in cash aid distribution — Fernandez

May 7, 2020 @ 21:25

Workers in the informal economy, comprising 25.7 million of the poorest of the poor in the labor sector, should be prioritized during the extension of the deadline for the distribution of cash assistance, according to Deputy Speaker Dan Fernandez.

The Laguna representative called on the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to take advantage of the four-day extension in guaranteeing that informal economy workers are able to access the cash assistance benefit.

Fernandez chided the DSWD for putting in place a process that “made it difficult and nearly hopeless” for the poorest in the labor sector to access government’s aid through the Social Amelioration Program.

Fernandez said the DSWD must now lift restrictive processes that will only deny millions of informal sector workers the said benefits.

He also vowed support for the conduct of a congressional inquiry into the DSWD unsatisfactory handling of the SAP program which was aimed at assisting poor and near poor Filipinos suffering from the effects of the enhanced community quarantine situation.

“This is a dangerous time and that is the reason why the power of oversight is being seen and being implemented right now,” Fernandez said a privilege speech in commemoration of the Workers in the Informal Economy Labor Day on Wednesday.

“During a crisis, we cannot be slow. Time is of the essence” Fernandez said.

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