Press Releases
DOLE’s Social Amelioration Program reaches Cagayan grassroots as pandemic aid

The current pandemic has brought to a halt a lot of the day-to-day activities of almost all workers, reducing their income-generating capacities because of quarantine measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The measures were effective health-wise, with the regional number of cases steadily declining in the last couple of weeks. 


With the current setup however, claims of workers in the sugar industry have also steadily declined as they had been unable to file their claims in DOLE offices, effectively curtailing their chances of getting maternity and/or death assistance needed so they can stay afloat as the region tries to weather the adverse effects of the pandemic. 


Cue DOLE RO2 which, through the leadership of Regional Director Joel M. Gonzales, has recently instructed regional office employees to bring the Social Amelioration Program (SAP) in the Sugar Industry in areas where sugar workers reside and work. 

One of the places visited was Barangay Carsumco, Piat, Cagayan last October 14, 2021, with the DOLE RO2 releasing 25 checks under the Sugar Workers Maternity Benefit Program (SWMBP) and another eight (8) checks under the Sugar Workers Death Benefit Program (SWDBP). 


Beneficiaries were meanwhile elated for the assistance that they were given with, noting that without DOLE’s effort of reaching their area, they would not have been able to experience the relief that the assistance will surely give. 


Nasayaat nga adda iti DOLE nga nangidanun dagituy nga tulong tapnu adda mausar mi tatta nga tagrigat (It is good that the DOLE was able to bring these assistances to our area for us to use in these trying times), Anna S. Palejo, one of the beneficiaries said. 


Director Gonzales meanwhile says that the DOLE RO2 hopes to bring more of these programs to as many hard-to-reach areas as possible in the remaining months of CY 2021. 


These sugar workers have been adversely affected by the pandemic and have no means to seek for help. Expect to see more of these assistances in other remote areas as the DOLE have the means and the capabilities to do such,” Director Gonzales said. 


The SAP in the Sugar Industry is an industry-based social protection program mandated under R.A. 6982, aiming to improve the socio-economic conditions of sugar workers and their families in mills and plantations who are vulnerable due to the seasonality of work in the sugar industry.


The SWMBP provides an amount of P5,000 to every qualified woman sugar worker for every complete delivery, and the next three (3) thereafter or therapeutic abortion on top of other maternity benefits that the beneficiary can claim under existing laws. 


The SWDBP meanwhile provides an amount of P10,000 as financial assistances for the cost of funeral and other related expenses to heirs or beneficiaries of deceased sugar workers. 


Questions and clarifications regarding the program may be lobbied through the nearest DOLE office. ###


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