The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Palawan is still waiting for the not less than P50 million budget in 2021 to be allocated for the continuation of the Tulong Panghanapbuhay para sa mga displaced and disadvantaged workers or TUPAD program to help displaced Palaweño workers due to the pandemic under Bayanihan to Heal as One Act 2.
DOLE Palawan chief labor and employment officer Luis Evangelista said that under Bayanihan 2, some P68,148,800 amount of budget was released by the department for 14,379 beneficiaries for the month of November and December.
Records of DOLE Palawan show a total of 21,510 beneficiaries in the province from DOLE-TUPAD #Barangay Ko, Bahay Ko Disinfecting/Sanitation (#BKBK) Project, Post-COVID, and the TUPAD under Bayanihan 2.
“We expect more ng TUPAD—Ngayong 2021 para sa Palawan. Not less than 50 million kasi may pending na kami ngayon na isang 14 million for different municipalities dito sa mainland. And then plus four million na may dumating din from other municipalities,” Evangelista said.
“Kasi ganito siya, once na ibinababa sa amin ang pondo ay through ADL or Advise of Disbursement Limit so magkakahiwalay ‘yon, another fund ‘yon kung saan siya intended. P14 million plus four, eighteen million na agad bumaba sa amin then meron din para sa Puerto Princesa I think around two million. We are coordinating already with the concerned LGUs for that,” he explained.
He also stated that even though the budget has already been released in 2020, some beneficiaries are still claiming their payment from the emergency employment program of the department.
In 2021, he expects that the number of beneficiaries for TUPAD program might increase.
“Iyong iba rito ay ongoing pa ‘yong payout kasi hindi pa naki-claim ng beneficiary kasi ‘yong iba ay walang cellphone, hindi ma-access. Pinupuntahan pa ng coordinator para lang mabigay ‘yong transaction code bago pa pupunta, lalo na ‘yong sa far-flung barangays. Hindi naman pwede na hindi nila bigyan ‘yong mga nandoon dahil sila ‘yong mas nangangailangan,” he said.
Evangelista also said their partner stakeholder such as Local Government Unit (LGU) identifies and submits names of possible beneficiaries under the program. The role of DOLE is to encode the names and verify it with the coordinator if questionable information rises.
He added that DOLE has extended its assistance from mainland to island towns to provide emergency employment for displaced workers wherein each beneficiary receives P4, 800 as payment to their community service which includes work related to disinfection and sanitation or clean and green programs.
The qualified beneficiaries are individuals who are displaced, underemployed, and seasonal workers.
“May mga partner stakeholders kami, sila ‘yong nag-i-identify at nagsa-submit sa amin ng names. Ang part lang namin ay i-encode siya sa system. Ngayon for example, Palawan-wide, medyo familiar ‘yong name tapos same birthday, magkaiba lang ng barangay, medyo question ‘yon kaya tinatawag namin ‘yon sa coordinator. Nakalagay naman sa isang column kung ano ‘yong trabaho nila,” he said.
Meanwhile, DOLE Palawan also recorded a total of 191 beneficiaries under its financial assistance to displaced land based and sea-based Filipino workers due to COVID-19 known as “DOLE-AKAP for OFWs”. Each beneficiary received a P10,000 financial assistance in 2020.