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Catanauan joins the fight against child labor under SHIELD

The local government of Catanuan, Quezon signed a memorandum of agreement with the Department of Social Welfare and Development IV-A for the pilot implementation of SHIELD against child labor project last April 24, 2016 in Catanauan, Quezon.

SHIELD or Strategic Helpdesks Information Education Livelihood and Developmental Interventions is a project of the DSWD that integrates multi-layered strategies and approaches to help eliminate child labor, particularly its worst forms and those in the blanket ban (child laborers below 15 years old).

During the MOA signing event, Regional Director Leticia T. Diokno of DSWD IV-A expressed her confidence that the program will greatly help the local government units (LGUs) to manage the cases of child labor in their areas.

“We envision that through this, the number of laborers in the region will significantly decrease. We need to develop comprehensive programs and other interventions that will address the root causes of child labor in the region”, shared by Director Diokno.

The DSWD through the SHIELD project will strengthen the capacity of the local government units, child laborers, families and service providers by educating them on child labor, developing information management and monitoring systems and creating immediate and developmental interventions for child laborers and their families.

According to Listahanan, an information management and targeting system utilized by the DSWD in selecting beneficiaries of its social protection programs and services, there are 85, 570 child laborers nationwide who are working in high risk areas such as in agriculture, mining, deep-sea fishing, manufacturing, quarrying and domestic work.

Based on the Philippines Statistics Authority, Region IV-A has the second highest number of child laborers in the county with 174,300. In Catanauan, Quezon, most of the child laborers are involved in deep-sea fishing “pagtutuba”, “pag-uuling”, fish drying and child domestic work.

DSWD Social Technology Bureau Director Thelsa P. Biolena emphasized in her message the importance of the active participation and support of local government units in ending child labor in the Philippines.

The 2-year pilot implementation will enable the LGU of Catanauan and other stakeholders to develop policies and integrate programs for child laborees that will be accessible to the community.

“Sana sa pamamagitan ng programang ito, dadating ang araw na wala na pong child laborers dito sa Catanauan. Sana rin maging magandang halimbawa ang Catanauan sa ibang gustong wakasan ang child labor sa kanilang lugar”, shared by Vice Mayor Juan T. Casal of Catanauan, Quezon.

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