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Palace stresses gov’t resolve vs poverty

The government is aiming to bring “comfortable lives” to Filipinos and help them bring more food on their table through a package of pro-poor initiatives.

Presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella affirmed the government’s resolve to address poverty and hunger after a Social Weather Stations survey showed poor Filipinos lack half of the money needed to get out of poverty.

“Bringing comfortable lives to all is the overarching goal of the Duterte administration. As a starter, the government initiated some pro-poor and inclusive efforts that include higher pension for seniors, free medicine for indigents, added incentive and combat pay for police and soldiers, and gratuity pay to job order and contract workers in the government,” Abella said.

“Through these initiatives we hope there will be more food on the poor household families’ table,” he added.

The survey, conducted last March, showed the national median self-rated poverty gap, or the amount poor families lack in monthly home expenses relative to their threshold, is P5,000.

This is half of the respondent families stated Self-Rated Poverty Threshold, or the monthly budget that a poor household needs for home expenses in order for them not to consider themselves poor in general, of P10,000, according to Abella.

The survey also showed the Self-Rated Food Poverty Gap, or the amount food-poor families lack in monthly food expenses relative to their stated threshold, reached P2,000.

Abella said this is lower compared to their stated Self-Rated Food Poverty Threshold, or the monthly budget that a food-poor household needs for food expenses in order not to consider its food as poor is P5,000.
(Genalyn D. Kabiling)