Research group IBON congratulates Dr. Judy M. Taguiwalo, Chairperson of IBON’s Board of Trustees, on being chosen by president-elect Rodrigo Duterte to head the incoming administration’s Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD). The group expressed optimism that she will be confirmed by the Commission on Appointments and, along with other progressives in the new cabinet, lead the department in taking important steps to improve the people’s well-being.
Dr. Taguiwalo is eminently qualified and has demonstrated her people-centered standpoint and commitment over four decades of exemplary service. She recently retired from the Department of Women and Development Studies of the University of the Philippines (UP) College of Social Work and Community Development, which she had been the chairperson of aside from having been the director of the University Center for Women’s Studies. She is also on her third term as Chairperson of IBON’s Board of Trustees.
Dr. Taguiwalo finished her Ph.D in Philippine Studies at UP Diliman, earned her master’s degree in Public Administration (Development Stream) from Carleton University of Ontario, Canada, and got her Bachelor of Science in Social Work (cum laude) from UP Diliman. She specializes in Women and History, Women, Work and Unionism and Organizing and Organizational Development.
A long-time nationalist and staunch advocate of community, education and women’s rights, she was Founding National President of the All UP Academic Employee Union and a founder of the All-UP Workers’ Alliance. She chairs the Committee on Women of the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT)-Philippines and serves as spokesperson for the Educators Forum for Development (EfD), aside from being associated with many other Philippine and international non-government organizations. Dr. Taguiwalo was imprisoned for opposing the Marcos dictatorship, once even managing to escape prison.
IBON said that Dr. Taguiwalo has provided invaluable guidance to the institution in its advocacies against neoliberalism’s attack on people’s socio-economic rights and for genuine social transformation. She will bring the same strong and people-centered leadership to the DSWD.
Dr. Taguiwalo will certainly ensure that the department does not just address the symptoms of poverty but also contribute to tackling the neoliberal economic policies and inequitable social structures that cause these. IBON noted that she joins other possible progressive Cabinet members in pushing for a more ambitious, transformative and pro-poor social and economic policy agenda for the country. [End]