QC to provide skills training to ‘tambays’

Published June 25, 2018, 12:01 PM

by Francine Ciasico

By Chito Chavez

The Quezon City government has created a scheme that would provide loiterers or tambays a chance to become more productive citizens through its skills training programs.

Quezon City Vice-Mayor Joy Belmonte. (Mark Balmores/MANILA BULLETIN)
Quezon City Vice-Mayor Joy Belmonte. (Mark Balmores/MANILA BULLETIN)

In support of Oplan Tambay, Quezon City Vice Mayor Joy Belmonte would like to encourage apprehended loiterers (tambays) particularly those who are “unemployed or out-of-school to avail of opportunities offered by the local government to start anew’’.

Belmonte said “tambays,” some of whom are unemployed, should be encouraged by the society, as well as the government, to change their ways and see their worth instead of being vilified or treated as potential criminals.

“If they are of working age, willing tayong saluhin sila (we are willing to give them hope). We have skills training program. They can also enroll in our community college,” the vice mayor pointed out, citing the need to erase the negative perceptions and prejudices against the “tambays”.

While these opportunities offered by the Quezon City local government are open to all, Belmonte added that those labeled as “tambays” will have clean slates to start anew and become more productive citizens.

“We shouldn’t judge them just because they’re “tambays.” We should encourage them to be productive. They still have hope in this city,” Belmonte added.

Up to 8,000 “tambays” have been rounded up by the Philippine National Police (PNP) around Metro Manila in response to President Duterte’s order last week to intensify the campaign against loiterers.

Belmonte expressed her support to the campaign, saying it is only a strict implementation of various city ordinances about drinking in public, curfew for minors, and walking around shirtless.

In Quezon City, Belmonte said they are implementing Ordinance SP 2301 or “The Quezon City Discipline Hours for Minors”; Ordinance SP-5038 that prohibits drinking in public; and Ordinance No. SP-2623 that targets half-naked people loitering in the streets.

Around 900 “tambays” have been arrested in Quezon City for violating the subject city ordinances, according to Belmonte, citing data from the Quezon City Police District (QCPD).

Belmonte is urging the “tambays” to avail of the various programs of the Office of the Vice Mayor such as the skills training courses being offered by the Quezon City Skills and Livelihood Foundation Inc. (QCSLFI).

“Mayroon tayong programs na pwedeng pasukan katulad ng community college at ibang skills and livelihood programs ng lungsod (We have programs that they can enter to like community college and other skills and livelihood programs of the city),” Belmonte said.

In partnership with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), the Special Training for Employment Program (STEP) is one of Belmonte’s poverty alleviation programs targeting the city’s disadvantaged communities, out-of-school youths, unemployed residents, former drug dependents, high school dropouts, and solo parents.

Belmonte has also partnered with the Ateneo de Manila University (ADMU), Division of City Schools, and TESDA in the Quezon City Community College (QCCC) program.

QCCC offers poor city residents, including the unemployed, a second shot at finishing school through 10-month technical-vocational courses at TESDA and a special program under the prestigious Ateneo Center for Educational Development (ACED) of ADMU.

Aside from the technical courses and life skills training program of ACED, student beneficiaries are also provided with Alternative Learning System (ALS) by the Department of Education through the Division of City Schools in Quezon City.