Senator Grace Poe, chair of the Senate Committee on Public Services, led the launch of a program that will grant livelihood assistance to jeepney drivers affected by the pandemic in the National Capital Region and its neighboring provinces (NCR Plus).
According to the veteran legislator, the integrated livelihood program will extend much needed help to jeepney drivers. Through the program, displaced jeepney drivers may eventually pursue alternative livelihoods in the midst of the pandemic.
“We see clearly the extent by which our jeepney drivers’ means of living have been jeopardized by the pandemic. We must extend them crucial help so they can pursue an alternative and sustainable livelihood.”Senator grace poe
The program, under the Department of Labor and Employment, will select 70 deserving jeepney drivers. The beneficiaries must be of legal age, not included in the 4Ps list, and displaced by pandemic restrictions or are unable to work due medical reasons.
Each jeepney driver will be given up to P30,000 worth of livelihood package. The selected drivers may avail of two livelihood programs, the “Starter Kit” or the “Negosyo sa Kariton.”
Through the “Starter Kit”, the beneficiaries will be given assistance to jumpstart alternative livelihoods. These include plumbing, electrical servicing, welding, car wash, motorcycle or cellular phone repair, upholstery, appliance, or massage services.
Concurrently, the “Negosyo sa Kariton” or Nego-Kart will provide seed capital so that the beneficiaries may pursue a micro-vending livelihood. The package will help in procuring resources for vending, such as carts and other necessary materials and tools.
“Displaced from their source of income because of the lockdowns, our drivers and other transport workers run the risk of becoming victims twice as government agencies appear incapable of using the billions of assistance funds to help them,” she said in a statement.Senator Grace Poe
The launch of the program coincided with a statement from Senator Poe last Friday. The senator noted that of the P1.5 billion aid for public utility vehicle (PUV) drivers, only P653 million has been distributed. As a result, Senator Poe is now seeking an explanation from the Department of Transportation (DOTr) regarding the aid distribution.