Familiaran’s ‘Solo Parent Ordinance’ Reaches the Brgys.

Lead convenor of the "Solo Parent Advocates in Negros" (SPAIN) Maria Teresa "Matet" Lozada, in a press conference held March 14, 2014, sealed partnership with Councilor El Cid Familiaran in implementing Ordinance 550 to the 61 Barangays of Bacolod City.

‘SPAIN OF FAMILIARAN’. Lead convenors of the "Solo Parent Advocates in Negros" (SPAIN) -- Maria Teresa "Matet" Lozada on March 14, 2014 sealed a partnership with Bacolod City Councilor El Cid Familiaran in implementing Ordinance 550 by handing the symbolic Troll Tinn bottle. Also in photo are (left to right) Co-Convenors Brgy. 41 Kagawad Sally Penuela, Analia Villegas, Moonyen Montelibano, Rose Lorilla, Lozada, Lilia Orsos, Susan Grandeza. Not in photo are Susan Seva and Dr. Bernie Eres.* (Gil Severino photo)

"Isa-isahon ko gid ang 61 Barangays sang Bacolod…the entire Bacolod City’s 61 Barangays will be covered. In a one-on-one approach, Solo Parents will be organized just like the senior citizens and people with disabilities," Lozada said.

She added, "In fact, as I am speaking to you now, volunteers are now mobilized in various puroks and barangays. They are speaking about leading productive lives as Solo Parents to their children."

Principally authored by Familiaran, Bacolod City Ordinance 550 is an "Ordinance institutionalizing the programs and services to Solo Parents and their children"; Lozada and a group of Solo Parent Advocates committed themselves to be harbingers of benefits enshrined in the ordinance.

"Only a single parent, male and female or mom and dad, can understand the plight of a fellow single parent and Councilor Familiaran’s authored Ordinance 550 has all the necessary framework to assist them cope with difficulties thus ensure their children’s welfare and future," Lozada explained to media gathered last Friday at the Negros Press Club.

She clarified that Ordinance 550 is not gender biased thus the involvement of both male and female advocates seeking to see a more productive and empowered family led by a male or female parent left alone to tend children due to death, separation, circumstances like rape, custodial or adoption.

Lozada disclosed that a follow-up "inter/intra-netizen" press conference-symposium will be held soon; it will be a convergence of government agencies, private citizens, Academe, NGOS, POs, government officials and the Tri-media.

Among the benefits extended to these individuals stipulated in the Familiaran’s Ordinance 550 and detailed during the press conference are "Employment Related Benefits to Solo Parents", which are:

Parental leave of not more than seven working days WITH PAY in addition to leave privileges under existing laws; flexible working schedules subject to prior arrangements with department heads; and legal sanctions to employers found guilty of discrimination relative to Republic Act 8972 or the Solo Parent Welfare Act.

Programs and services to solo parents also provided in Ordinance 550 are skills and livelihood training assistance through the City Cooperative and Livelihood Development Center (CCLDO), livelihood and skills development programs of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), the Self-Employment and Entrepreneurship Development (SEED) of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and the Department of Social Services and Development (DSSD) assistance through the SEA-K or self-empowerment assistance-Kaunlaran.*(Gil Alfredo B. Severino)




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