Press Release
January 21, 2019


Senator Sonny Angara has filed a bill that would create a government agency devoted to attending to the needs and concerns of senior citizens.

Senate Bill No. 2099 calls for the creation of the Council for the Welfare of Senior Citizens (CWSC) under the Office of the President that would formulate, coordinate and monitor policies and programs that promote the rights and privileges of the senior citizens' sector.

"Our Filipino citizens have contributed immensely to the growth and progress of the country. As they reach the twilight of their lives, it is our responsibility as a society to respect, protect and promote their rights and assure their physical, mental and social well-being," Angara said.

Based on the 2010 census, there were 6.23 million Filipinos aged 60 years and above. Its projection showed that the number would reach double digit to 14.2 million in 2030 and 22.5 million in 2045.

Angara, however, said his bill will help address what he called an "obvious institutional gap."

Unlike other underserved sectors, he said, the senior citizens sector "does not have a particular national government body devoted to serve their interests" like the National Council on Disability Affairs which handles the concerns of persons with disability, or the Philippine Commission on Women and the Council on the Welfare of Children, which take care of the needs of women and children, respectively.

"Though there exists, at present, an Office of Senior Citizens Affairs in cities and municipalities, there is no central leadership to guide policies on a national scale and ensure that senior citizens receive equal opportunities regardless of their place of residence," Angara explained.

The proposed CWSC will serve as the overall monitoring and oversight body to ensure the implementation of all laws, programs and services for the benefit of senior citizens.

Angara and his father, the late Senate President Edgardo Angara, are known champions of senior citizens' rights and welfare.

Republic Act 7432 or the Senior Citizens Act of 1993 authored by the older Angara granted elderly a 20-percent discount, while R.A. 9994 or the Expanded Senior Citizens Act of 2010 authored by the younger Angara provided the 12-percent value-added tax exemption and the social pension provision.

The young senator has also been pushing for the passage of a bill that aims to double the amount of social pension to P1,000 from the current P500, and to widen the coverage of beneficiaries to include all poor senior citizens.

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