Based on the latest report from the Department of the Interior and Local Government Cordillera regional office (DILG-CAR) dated June 12, 2020, there are already 1,633 locally stranded individuals (LSIs) in the region who were sent home.
During a joint virtual meeting with the members of the Cordillera Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CRDRRMC), the chairperson of the Regional Inter-Agency Task Force (RIATF) and DILG Cordillera regional director Marlo Iringan reported the exact number of LSIs who were assisted through coordination with concerned agencies and local government units (LGUs).
Out of the 2,493 enlisted LSIs, 1,633 were sent home or have reached their destinations and are following standard health protocols, 473 are currently processing their requirements such as medical certificates and travel authority, while 387 are still pending and undergoing verification whether to push through the intention to travel back to residences or to discontinue the plan.
It is recalled that the DILG has issued memorandum circular 87 directing LGUs to put up help desks intended to aid stranded individuals and Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs). There are also established one-stop-shop for the management of LSIs at the local level.
In a report from the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) Cordillera, there are already 710 OFWs who were assisted from May 1 to June 9. There are 563 OFWs who were served at the Baguio Teacher’s Camp Quarantine Facility since April 17.
Out of the 2,939 applications for DOLE-AKAP (financial assistance for displaced OFWs) received by OWWA, 1,842 were successfully endorsed to the Cordillera regional office of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE-CAR).
Aside from the national government programs, the assistance provided to stranded individuals was made possible through the initiatives of the LGUs – Oplan SUMAAR of Mountain Province, Oplan GAWID of Ifugao, Oplan Mahuli ne Wahi of Apayao, Returning Baguio Residents (RBR), and Oplan Mangulin in Kalinga.
Even with the challenges being encountered in assisting LSIs (limited resources such as vehicles to fetch and ferry LSIs, and limited time for coordination with concerned offices and LGUs), the DILG-CAR continues to harmonize its efforts with other regional line agencies and LGUs in order to provide timely services during this tough times.
Meanwhile, as the chairperson of RIATF, Dir. Iringan shared with the member agencies of the task force the possible adoption of the ‘zoning concept’ by the national task force. Further, the RIATF also recommends the adoption of the Police Regional Office Cordillera (PRO-Cor) proposal to require returning government employees to secure travel authority and return-to-work order prior to travelling.
“Sa gitna ng lahat ng nangyayari, marami pa tayong kailangang bunuin upang malabanan ang covid19 pandemic, nawa’y pag-igihin at lalong paghusayin pa natin ang gating mga ginagawa sa panahong ito,” said Dir. Iringan to fellow public servants.
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