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President Aquino signed the Children’s Emergency Relief and Protection Act in Malacanang yesterday, a month-and-a-half before his term ends.
Republic Act No. 10821 creates a comprehensive country-wide plan to protect children affected by disasters.
It mandates the Department of Social Welfare and Development and other national agencies to enhance services related to monitoring and protection of children vulnerable to and affected by disasters.
These include improved family tracing for unaccompanied minors, separate data collection to identify children, child-focused emergency trainings, and limiting use of schools as evacuation centers so that children could quickly resume their classes.
The new law also ensures basic needs for the youth during disasters such as food and clothing, as well as education and medical services.
“Paiigtingin din nito ang pagbabantay sa seguridad at kaligtasan ng kabataan. Magsasagawa tayo ng child-responsive training program para sa lahat ng responders sa mga lugar na pinangyayarihan ng kalamidad. Sa paraang ito, ang pagtutok sa kaligtasan ng kabataan, magiging prayoridad na rin sa emergency response training ng ating NDRRMC agency members,” Aquino said.
The President said the signing of the law is one proof that the Aquino administration’s Daang Matuwid has worked for the betterment of the Filipino people until the end of his term.
“Hanggang sa mga huling sandali ng pagbagtas natin sa Daang Matuwid, narito po tayo at ang inyong gobyerno, nakatutok sa pagtutupad ng isang panata: Ipamana ang isang Pilipinas na di hamak na mas maganda kaysa ating dinatnan,” Aquino said.
“Patapos na nga po ang ating termino. 43 days na lang po ang natitira, bababa na tayo sa puwesto. Sa kabila nito, nakita niyo naman po, tuloy-tuloy lang tayo sa ating trabaho. Sinasagad natin ang bawat pagkakataong makapaglingkod sa ating mga Boss, ang sambayanang Pilipino,” he said.
And just as he had said in previous speeches, Aquino said it has been an honor to serve such a great people, the Filipinos.