All you need to know about the Expanded Solo Parents Welfare Act.
The Expanded Solo Parents Welfare Act, which grants more benefits to single parents, lapsed into law on June 4, 2022.
It amends some provisions of RA 8792 and mandates enhanced solo parent benefits in the Philippines. For one, it expands the definition of a solo parent.
Under the new law, spouses and family members of OFWs who belong to the low or semi-skilled category and live outside of the Philippines for an unbroken period of 12 months are now considered solo parents.
It also includes grandparents, guardians, and other family members who bear full responsibility for taking care of the child.
Moreover, the new law entitles solo parents to a ₱1,000 cash subsidy per month if they're earning minimum wage and below. The local government unit (LGU) will allocate this subsidy.
What else can solo parents expect from this new law? If the solo parent earns less than ₱250,000 a year, they will be entitled to a 10% discount and exemption from the value-added tax. Their purchases, such as diapers, infant milk and food, prescription medicines and vaccines, and micronutrient and medical supplements from birth until six years old, will be VAT-exempt.
Solo parents will also be granted seven days of parental leave regardless of their employment status. They will be prioritized in a telecommuting program as well.
There's also a section in the new law that declares the third week and third Saturday of April of each year as Solo Parents Week and National Parents Day, respectively.
ATTRACTIONS TO SEE IN MANILA
Other solo parent benefits in the Philippines under this new law include the following:
- Automatic PhilHealth coverage
- Apprenticeship programs at the Technical Education Skills Development Authority (TESDA) for qualified single parents and their children
- Right of a solo parent to receive benefits until their child is 22 years old
In addition, solo parents who have children in school will be prioritized in the selection of new Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) beneficiaries, as long as they’re earning below or within minimum wage. Solo parents can also apply for livelihood assistance through the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD)’s Sustainable Livelihood Program.
ACTIVITIES AND TOURS IN MANILA
According to DSWD Secretary Erwin Tulfo, a technical working group will work on the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) to implement the Expanded Solo Parents’ Welfare Act. The agency is looking at a period of 90 days for the IRR to be finalized. This way, solo parents in the Philippines can enjoy their enhanced benefits as soon as possible.
To avail of these solo parent benefits, you must present your valid Solo Parent ID, which you can apply for or renew at your LGU’s Solo Parent Office.