Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz yesterday said the convergent Community-Based Employment Program (CBEP), which the DOLE is tasked to monitor, had benefited 8,603,993 disadvantaged persons, including disaster victims, across the country in terms of short-term jobs from 2011 to 2014.“When the administration came into office in 2010, it knew the need for quality infrastructure like roads and bridges, housing, and telecommunication facilities to attract investors, move fast the flow of commerce, and create jobs, particularly in the remote communities. So, the President revived the emergency employment program which her mother, former President Corazon C. Aquino started to energize local economies and to provide workers with social protection. We called it the Community-Based Employment Program, or CBEP,” said Baldoz.
The CBEP is a priority convergence programs aimed to contribute to the national goal of inclusive growth, poverty reduction, and job creation, particularly in the countryside, or the local community.
Of the total short-term CBEP jobs, 3,528,577 million jobs were generated by infrastructure projects of the government, while 5,075,416 million jobs were created by 74 non-infrastructure projects and programs of 21 government agencies.
Baldoz said the aggregate total of CBEP short-term jobs is not complete yet, because the government expects more CBEP beneficiaries until the end of President Aquino III’s term in 2016.
The CBEP, through the last five years, has shown significant rise in terms of jobs it generated for disadvantaged workers. For 2011, which is the year it was revived, it generated 1,238,225 short-term jobs; 2012, the CBEP created 2,324,311; in 2013, it created 1,987,337 jobs; and in 2014, it 3,054,120 short-term jobs, mainly for displaced persons, especially in the rural areas.
The DOLE as chairman of the CBEP Steering Committee leads in coordinating and monitoring jobs generated by various agencies with enrolled infrastructure and non-infrastructure projects through the CBEP Online Monitoring and Reporting System.
“The convergent, inter-agency Community-Based Employment Program is an effective avenue by which all major agencies of the Philippine government could respond, and in effect, help disadvantaged people stand back on their own feet,” said Baldoz.
The 24 participating agencies are the Departments of Agrarian Reform (DAR), Agriculture (DA), Education (DepEd), Foreign Affairs (DFA), Energy (DOE), Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Health (DOH), Labor and Employment (DOLE), Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Trade and Industry (DTI), Transportation and Communication (DOTC), Tourism (DOT); Intramuros Administration (IA); Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA); Light Rail Transit Authority (LRTA); Office Transportation Security; Philippine National Railways (PNR); Philippine Ports Authority (PPA); Commission on Filipinos Overseas (CFO); Landbank of the Philippines (LBP); Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA); National Housing Authority (NHA), National Youth Commission (NYC).
The CBEP is consistent with the overarching goal enunciated by President Benigno S. Aquino III, in his 22-point labor and employment agenda, to “invest in our country’s top resource, our human resource, to make us more competitive and employable while promoting industrial peace based on social justice,” by working “with relevant government agencies in enhancing social protection programs . . . while strengthening the Emergency Community Employment Program (ECEP) to create jobs immediately so people can still have income to spend for their basic needs.”
The CBEP has three components, namely: (a) Infrastructure projects that generate jobs through the construction of roads, bridges, flood control structures, school buildings, and water systems; (b) non-infrastructure projects covering social infrastructure like reforestation, coastal resource management, livelihood and self-employment undertakings/projects; and (c) emergency employment projects or income support endeavors that create short-term wage employment or self-employment in distressed/remote areas, especially those affected by calamities/contingencies.