Four out of five adult Filipinos said their quality of life worsened in the past year, thus making it one of the worst trends in survey history according to the Social Weather Stations.
The survey, conducted from September 17 to 20, found that 82 percent of adult Filipinos said their quality-of-life got worse (Losers), versus 11 percent that said it was the same (Unchanged), and six percent who said it got better (Gainers), compared to a year ago.
The September 2020 score joins SWS’s worst trends in survey history, having recorded -78 in May and -72 in July during the Covid-19 crisis. The only other time the score reached catastrophic level was in June 2008 (-50), during rice and oil price hikes.
Net Gainers is catastrophic in all areas: it is -80 in the Visayas, -76 in Metro Manila, -75 in Balance Luzon, and -74 in Mindanao.
Compared to July 2020 figures, all areas experienced a worsening in their Net Gainers scores: Mindanao experienced the biggest drop of 9 points; the Visayas, 5 points; Metro Manila, 4 points; and Balance Luzon, 1 point .
The score hardly differs between those with a job and the jobless. Net Gainers is significantly worse among those who did not graduate from college.
Among college graduates, the score is -64. Meanwhile, among those with less education, the score ranges from -72 to -83. The score is worst among those who only finished up to some junior high school education .
Historically, college graduates have tallied better scores than those with less education .
Net Gainers is just as low among those with a job as it is among the jobless: it is -73 among those with a job, -77 among those who never had a job, and -79 among those who do not have a job at present but used to have one.
In September 2020, the SWS adult joblessness rate was at 39.5%.
Meanwhile, adults from families that were involuntarily hungry in the last three months had a higher Losers score than those that were not. As a result, the Net Gainers score was -84 among the hungry, compared to only -72 among the non-hungry.
Further, the score does not vary by the degree of hunger experienced; those who experienced severe (“often” and “always”) and moderate (“only once” and “a few times”) hunger both tallied a score of -84.
SWS said that the survey question on quality-of-life trends in the past 12 months has been fielded 137 times since April 1983.
Data were gathered through mobile phone interviews of adult Filipinos (18 years old and above), randomly drawn from a database of mobile phone numbers compiled from SWS national and subnational representative face-to-face surveys since 2017.
As this developed, Malacañang said it is saddened by the survey results, which it attributed to the health crisis.
Presidential spokesperson Harry Roque acknowledged that Filipinos would feel that their life worsened due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Of course, we are sad to hear that, but that’s because of the pandemic,” he said.
However, he expressed hope that Filipinos’ quality of life would improve once a vaccine becomes available.
“I think our lives will improve, a vaccine will soon be available and we are living to live with COVID-19,” he added.