Social Protection Floor cements programs for most vulnerable Pinoys
President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has approved a Social Protection Floor (SPF) that institutionalizes existing programs that help the most vulnerable Filipinos, Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan said Thursday.
“The Social Protection Floor refers to a nationally defined set of basic social security guarantees that aim to prevent or alleviate poverty vulnerability and social exclusion. These guarantees provide protection to individuals and families in times of need,” said
Balisacan, who is also director-general of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA).
“The guarantees should ensure that, at a minimum, everyone in need has access to essential health care and basic social services. These guarantees work together to provide effective access to goods and services that are defined as necessary at the national level,” he said.
The SPF health guarantees cover the entire life cycle: maternity care, children, active age and older persons, Balisacan said.
The NEDA chief said the approval of the government Social Protection Floor represented “significant progress” in the country’s development history.
“This is a manifestation of the government’s commitment tosignificantly reduce poverty incidence and promote inclusive growth,” he said.
“The intention is to institutionalize the existing programs especially those that have been proven to work so that we don’t have to restart all over again when there are needs to provide support to vulnerable groups,” he said.
“That’s the basic concept there that we reduce the risk faced by vulnerable groups so that they don’t fall into poverty, so that children don’t become victims of lack of learning that can be exacerbated by exposures to shocks like climate change, supply disruptions particularly those affecting food, inflation, [and] loss of jobs by their parents,” Balisacan said.
“So, we want to ensure that… these children are protected from those shocks so that the society as a whole can progress,” he added.