Labor and Employment Secretary Silvestre H. Bello III yesterday commended the Department of Labor and Employment Regional Office No. 5 for actively participating in this year’s nationwide observance of the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking (IDADAIT).

 

“The DOLE is one with the nation in observing the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, and strongly supports the Administration’s war against illegal drugs. Activities like these are important in raising awareness and in promoting drug-free workplaces,” the DOLE chief said.

 

In a report, Atty. Ma. Karina B. Perida-Trayvilla, OIC-Regional Director of DOLE Regional Office No. 5 said that this year’s observance, which was held on 26 June, was spearheaded by the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) and was hosted by the local government of Naga City.

This year’s commemoration is anchored on the United Nations’ prescribed theme, “Listen First: Listening to Children and Youth is the First Step to Help Them Grow Healthy and Safe.”

 

Secretary Felipe Rojas Jr., Chairman of the Dangerous Drugs Board and former Chief of Police of Marikina City, was the keynote speaker during the program. He stressed the importance of a strong family bond which he said will protect children from risky and harmful behavior, including illegal drug use.

 

The Naga City event also aimed to identify the responsibilities of the government and various sectors of society in the fight against illegal drugs in the country. Rojas discussed the ill-effects of dangerous drugs; the means to create awareness among the youth; and the government’s role in the rehabilitation of drug dependents.

 

In a message, Rep. Gabriel Bordado, Jr. of the 3rd District of Camarines Sur expressed his utmost support to the Duterte administration’s fight against illegal drugs, and encouraged everyone to become more vigilant.

 

Mayor John Bongat of Naga City emphasized the role of government in strengthening the advocacy against illegal drugs, and proposed the establishment of additional counselling and rehabilitation centers in the country. The Naga City Mayor said that drug problems can never be solved overnight; “however, if Filipinos unite, the increasing number of drug users and drug-related problems can be diminished,” he said.

 

This year’s celebration was highlighted by the 1st Recovery Summit and ‘Fambam’ Activity on Drug Abuse Prevention, participated in by treatment and rehabilitation patients and recovering drug dependents from the Bicol Region who shared their struggles and their journey in their quest for a new beginning.

 

Every 26th of June, the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking is observed pursuant to the United Nations Declaration dated 7 December 1987 and Presidential Proclamation No. 264 signed on 6 June 1988.

 

END/Thea Majan  

 

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