COVID-19 response

No more COVID-19 ayuda, stingy increases in social assistance

September 12, 2021

How much ayuda is in the proposed 2022 budget? There’s just a Php2.7 billion increase in emergency assistance programs, and only an additional Php16.1 billion for other social assistance programs. In contrast, the infrastructure budget increases by Php106.7 billion.

Business-as-usual 2022 budget unresponsive to pandemic – IBON

August 26, 2021

The proposed 2022 national budget is perplexingly business-as-usual with the same priorities as before the pandemic. There is still disproportionate attention to infrastructure, the military and police, and debt service with only marginal changes to the health and social protection budgets. This latest spending plan should not just be scrutinized but also retailored to give due attention to urgent medical and economic responses.

2022 budget stalls recovery, worsens inequality

August 23, 2021

Government’s proposed 2022 national budget is the second budget in a row that fails to respond to the pandemic. The Duterte administration is not spending enough on economic stimulus, health, ayuda, and small businesses which are the most important things to recover quickly and stop worsening deprivation. The economic managers’ misguided fiscal conservatism is counterproductive and needs urgent correction.

Duterte administration’s shift to MECQ meaningless without urgent COVID-19 steps

August 20, 2021

The government has announced the easing of community quarantines. But new cases are still rising and there are no signs of government taking additional measures to fix the health system during the last two weeks of stricter lockdowns. If the health system is as weak as ever, what’s our way out of the pandemic?

Jobs crisis rages, ayuda diminishes

August 17, 2021

Ayuda helped mitigate the unemployment shock in April last year but this dropped to just token amounts afterwards despite millions still being unemployed and in desperate need of assistance. Poor pandemic response just made things even worse.

The Family Living Wage (as of July 2021)

August 13, 2021

How much does a family need to live decently? With ayuda still slow in coming and too little at that, millions of Filipino families aren’t going to be able to meet their basic needs.