DSWD crafting supplemental guidelines on inclusion of former violent extremists as E-CLIP beneficiaries

Published July 8, 2021, 11:33 PM

by Charissa Luci-Atienza 

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) said Thursday, July 8, that it “is crafting” supplemental guidelines to pave the way for the inclusion of the former violent extremists as beneficiaries of the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program or E-CLIP.

REBEL RETURNEES — Surigao del Sur Gov. Alexander T. Pimentel (2nd from right) receives the automatic rifles surrendered by former New People’s Army rebels during the awarding of cash and livelihood assistance to rebel returnees in Tandag City, Surigao del Sur in September 2020. (Photo courtesy of 4th IF-PAO via Mike U. Crismundo/Manila Bulletin File Photo)

The DSWD, which is one of the lead agencies in the implementation of the E-CLIP, vowed to “continue implementing several programs towards the attainment of an inclusive and sustainable peace through intensified development and other peace-building initiatives.”

“In addition to the efforts of the DSWD in the Whole-of-Nation approach in ending the armed conflict and pursuant to the Administrative Order No. 25, series of 2020, the Department is crafting supplemental guidelines on DSWD MC (Memorandum Circular) No. 3, series of 2020, to incorporate the former violent extremists as beneficiaries of the Enhanced Comprehensive Local Integration Program,” it said in a statement on Thursday.

E-CLIP is provided under Executive Order No.70, series of 2018, which was signed by President Duterte in December 2018. It seeks to institutionalize a whole-of-nation approach in addressing the local communist armed conflict.

“As lead agency in social protection, the DSWD provides interventions following the peace agenda of Executive Order (EO) 70, series of 2018 in two tracks, through the implementation of DSWD Memorandum Circular (MC) No. 3, series of 2020,” the social welfare department said.

Under the first track, the provision of assistance is given to former rebels and their families, through existing DSWD programs such as Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations (AICS), Psychosocial Interventions and other Protective Services, Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program or 4Ps, and the Sustainable Livelihood Program (SLP).

“For the first semester of 2021, the DSWD has served 1,105 former rebels and their families under Track 1,” the DSWD reported.

The second track, meanwhile, ensures social services for Conflict-affected and Vulnerable Areas (CVAs) through programs such as, but not limited to KALAHI-CIDSS, PAyapa at MAsaganang PamayaNAn or PAMANA, Social Pension, and Supplemental Feeding Program, it said

The DSWD said a total of 102,029 individuals and 184,997 households in CVAs have so far received assistance under Track 2.

“Furthermore, the Department aims to achieve significant progress in supporting the peace effort with armed groups and in the delivery of public services in CVAs by the year 2022, through continuous and effective implementation of other peace-building programs.”

The DSWD also implements other peace programs such as the Normalization Program for Decommissioned Combatants of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), the Reintegration Program for the KAPATIRAN, and the upcoming Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) Transformation Program.

The DSWD cited it has crafted a Social Work Case Management Guide for Insurgent Returnees “to serve as an improved standard for case managers in extending support and services to Former Rebels, Decommissioned Combatants and other groups who wish to return to mainstream society.”

“The Department is hopeful that these efforts will strengthen the peace-building initiatives of the government, especially in conflict-stricken communities.”