Republic of the Philippines
Province of ______________
City/Municipality of ________
Barangay Council of __________
Ordinance No. _______
An Ordinance Providing for Additional Mechanisms to Support
the Implementation of Social Protection Programs and Services
of the Government for Senior Citizens/Older Persons
WHEREAS, there is a regular 5-year Philippine Plan of Action for Senior Citizens (PPASC) developed and promulgated in compliance with our commitments under the Macau Regional Plan of Action, the Madrid Programme of Action, and the Shanghai Implementation Strategy where there are seven (7) major areas of concern, including health and nutrition as well as financial security of older persons;
WHEREAS, Republic Act No. 9994, otherwise known as the Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010 seeks to address the needs of the elderly sector and provide social protection to Filipino older persons through various government assistance;
WHEREAS, the World Health Organization (WHO) recently directed through its Regional Framework on Ageing and Health that different Western Pacific States should look into their healthcare systems and develop responsive interventions for ageing and health;
WHEREAS, under RA 9994, the Social Pension Program and Mandatory PhilHealth Coverage for senior citizens are two (2) of the most important and availed of benefits by Filipino older persons;
WHEREAS, while the National Government Agencies (NGAs) and Local Government Units (LGUs) are the primary duty-bearers in ensuring the efficient and effective implementation of the programs, there is a need for additional human resources and support mechanisms to assist the current operations and staffing contingent;
WHEREAS, one of the greatest assets of the Filipino elderly sector is its organized communities of senior citizens under various federations, associations, and other civil society groups, able and willing to work for the interests and welfare of their fellow older persons;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED BY THE SANGGUNIAN IN SESSION ASSEMBLED:
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE – This Ordinance shall be known and cited as the “Support Mechanisms for Social Protection Programs for the Elderly”.
SECTION 2. DECLARATION OF POLICY – The Philippine Constitution mandates that the State shall promote a rising standard of living and an improved quality of life, and at the same time prioritize the needs of the underprivileged, such as the elderly.
Republic Act No. 9994 also states that it aims to give full support to the improvement of the total well-being of the elderly and their full participation in society.
SECTION 3. OBJECTIVES – Towards this end, this Ordinance seeks to:
- Recognize the importance of supporting social protection programs for the elderly and ensuring their efficient and effective implementation by providing all necessary assistance and resources;
- Enjoin senior citizens organizations and other civil society groups who are willing and able to assist in the implementation of the Social Pension Program and mandatory PhilHealth coverage;
- Formalize specific institutional arrangements at the local or community level which have been effective mechanisms in reaching out to the target beneficiaries;
- Promote transparency and accountability in the efficient implementation of social protection programs;
- Ensure accessible and equitable availment of resources and benefits under government programs.
SECTION 4. DEFINITION OF TERMS – For the purpose of this ordinance, the following terms shall be defined as:
- Senior Citizen – A Filipino citizen and resident who is at least sixty (60) years old or older, who may be entitled to rights and benefits under RA 9994, including social pension and mandatory Philhealth coverage; It may be used interchangeably with elderly and/or older persons.
- Social Pension – The monthly stipend of P500 granted to indigent senior citizens who are sick, frail, disabled, without any pension benefits, no permanent or regular source of income, nor receiving any financial assistance from family or relatives to support his/her basic needs;
- Mandatory Philhealth Coverage – The healthcare coverage granted to all senior citizens under RA 9994 and its amendment RA 10645, regardless of economic status to ensure that healthcare is accessible and available to all Filipino elderly;
- Senior Citizens Organizations (SCO) – A collective of local senior citizens organized officially as a federation, association, or People’s Organization (PO) with registration at the Securities and Exchange Commission or as an affiliate, and/or with LGU registration;
- Civil Society Organizations (CSO) – A general term for all private sector groups catering to specific underprivileged or marginalized populations, which are not from the business or industry sector;
- OSCA Head – The Office of Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA) Head is a senior citizen from one of the legitimate local senior citizens groups nominated and duly appointed to be primarily responsible for ensuring that senior citizens in their locality enjoy all their rights and privileges under the law;
- C/MSWDO – The local social welfare and development officer (LSWDO) lodged with the city or municipality level who works closely with OSCA Heads in implementing elderly programs and services;
- Regional Social Pension Unit (RSPU) – The social pension unit lodged with Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Regional/Field Office responsible for coordinating the implementation of the Social Pension Program with the LGUs.
SECTION 5. ADDITIONAL MANPOWER – To ensure the effective and efficient implementation of the programs, and to address the difficulty of having limited human resources, the LGU shall:
- Activate and authorize all available barangay workers (i.e., barangay health worker, Day Care worker) to assist in the verification and validation of potential elderly beneficiaries;
- Encourage and recognize senior citizens organizations or civil society groups (i.e., church/parish organizations, sectoral or human rights NGOs) who are willing to assist in the identification and referral of potential beneficiaries;
- Maximize linkages and interface with existing local councils or committees organized by the LGU like the Gender and Development (GAD) Focal, Violence against Women and Children (VAWC) Desk, or Barangay Human Rights Action Center (BHRAC) who may also have some referrals
SECTION 6. CONSTITUTION OF SUPPORT MECHANISMS – The Mayor, upon the recommendation and initiative of the OSCA Head and C/MSWDO or senior citizens groups, may authorize the constitution of additional committees such as but not limited to initial screening/verification committees, local grievance machinery, senior citizens task force, etc. to assist and provide administrative support in the implementation of the programs.
SECTION 7. DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF STAKEHOLDERS – The following shall be the authorized acts of the above-mentioned stakeholders:
- Senior Citizens organizations and other civil society groups may refer potential beneficiaries from their own Membership Rolls who they believe are qualified under the programs. They may also assist in verifying the eligibility of the target beneficiaries based on the requirements stated in the guidelines and the standard General Intake Sheet/Registration Form. SCOs and CSOs may likewise conduct their own independent advocacy activities to create awareness about the program. However, they are not in a position to use their discretion and outrightly reject any application, and must forward all applications for final assessment by the OSCA Head and C/MSWDO.
- Barangay Workers such as barangay health workers and Day Care workers, if it will not conflict with their regular duties, may be requested and authorized to assist in the verification of potential beneficiaries based on the requirements stated in the guidelines and the standard General Intake Sheet (GIS)/Registration Form. They are not in the discretionary position to reject any application and must forward all applications for final assessment of the C/MSWDO and OSCA Head.
- The OSCA Head and C/MSWDO must ensure that all applications are registered in their LGU database, so that potential beneficiaries are able to access all available resources and programs they are entitled to besides social pension and PhilHealth. Granted the authority to conduct They are the only ones who are empowered to use their discretion in accepting or rejecting any applications, and must duly notify in writing the applicants of their decision of whether or not they are to be included in the “masterlist” to be transmitted to DSWD for possible funding and inclusion in the Social Pension program. As for PhilHealth coverage, upon request of authorized PhilHealth officials, they may share their database or record of Senior Citizens ID card issuances to facilitate registration and inclusion in the PhilHealth database.
- The DSWD, through its Field Office – Regional Social Pension Unit (RSPU) shall conduct regular advocacy, orientations and briefings on the above-mentioned programs with the LGUs to raise awareness and propagate correct information to the public, and more importantly to train and capacitate other stakeholders willing to assist.
SECTION 8. COORDINATION WITH THE LOCAL CIVIL REGISTRAR – To further facilitate the efficient implementation of the programs, the OSCA and C/MSWDO may regularly coordinate with the Local Civil Registrar on the following:
- To facilitate the issuance of a (Late Registration) Birth Certificate for senior citizens without any documentation which can be used as basis for the issuance of a Senior Citizens ID;
- To waive necessary fees for copies of other relevant documentation like marriage certificates or their children’s birth certificates as additional documents to prove the age and identity of a senior citizen for the issuance of a Senior Citizens ID;
- To submit to the OSCA a list of recently deceased senior citizens based on the Death Certificates registered with them;
SECTION 9. RELEVANT RULES AND GUIDELINES – This ordinance shall be enforced according to and only in compatibility with the existing Social Pension and PhilHealth guidelines and issuances. Any conflict or confusion shall be resolved in favor of the latter program guidelines which shall prevail.
SECTION 10. APPROPRIATION – To sustain the noble objectives of this ordinance, the initial amount of ________________is hereby allocated to be charged against the administrative funds implementing these programs.
SECTION 11. SEPARABILITY – If any provision or part hereof shall be held invalid, the remaining provisions of this ordinance shall remain valid and subsisting.
SECTION 12. EFFECTIVITY – This ordinance shall take effect immediately upon approval.