48% of Filipino families feel they are poor — SWS survey

Published July 26, 2021, 12:03 AM

by Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz

(SOCIAL WEATHER STATIONS)

Nearly half of Filipino families consider themselves poor, results of the Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey on self-rated poverty showed on Sunday, July 25.

The survey conducted from June 23-26 found 48 percent of Filipino families rating themselves as “mahirap” or poor, 23 percent rating themselves as “hindi mahirap” or not poor, and 29 percent placing themselves on the borderline dividing the two categories and classified by SWS as “borderline poor.”

SWS said this is similar to the findings in May 2021 when 49 percent felt poor, 17 percent felt not poor, and 33 percent felt borderline poor.

It noted that it was only in the Visayas where families feeling poor rose, from 56 percent to 70 percent, along with a decline in borderline poor, from 39 percent to 24 percent.

7% of families are ‘newly poor’

SWS also asked the self-rated poor if they ever experienced being non-poor–either not poor or borderline–in the past.

The total percentage of poor families consists of 7 percent who were non-poor one to four years ago (“newly poor”), 4.1 percent who were non-poor five or more years ago (“usually poor”), and 36.2 percent who never experienced being non-poor (“always poor”).

Of the estimated 12 million poor families in June 2021, 1.8 million were newly poor, 1 million were usually poor, and 9.1 million were always poor.

Those who were self-rated non-poor–either not poor or borderline–were also asked if they ever experienced being poor in the past.

The total percentage of non-poor families consists of 16.9 percent who were poor one to four years ago (“newly non-poor”), 9.9 percent who were poor five or more years ago (“usually non-poor”), and 25 percent who never experienced being poor (“always non-poor”).

Of the estimated 13.2 million non-poor families in June 2021, 4.3 million were newly non-poor, 2.5 million were usually non-poor, and 6.3 million were always non-poor.

Food-poor vs non-food-poor

During the same survey period, SWS found that 32 percent of Filipino families consider themselves as “food-poor,” 29 percent as “non-food-poor”, and 38 percent as “borderline food-poor.”

SWS said this is also similar to the findings in May 2021 when 32 percent felt food-poor, 23 percent felt not food-poor, and 45 percent felt borderline food-poor.

It also noted that Metro Manila was the only area where not food-poor families rose, from 31 percent to 44 percent), along with a sharp decrease in borderline food-poor families, from 39 percent to 26 percent.

In Mindanao, the self-rated food-poor, borderline food-poor, and not food-poor are 34 percent, 55 percent, and 11 percent, respectively, in June 2021 compared to 44 percent, 48 percent, and 8 percent in May 2021.

SWS said that Mindanao was the only area where food-poor families fell, together with an increase in borderline food-poor.

The June SWS survey used face-to-face interviews of 1,200 adults nationwide: 300 each in Metro Manila, Balance Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao.

The survey has sampling error margins of ±3 percent for national percentages and ±6 percent for Metro Manila, Balance Luzon, the Visayas, and Mindanao.

 
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