‘Bahay Pag-asa’ for CICL in Baguio City proposed

BAGUIO CITY –City Councilor Mylen Yaranon is proposing a measure that seeks for the establishment of “Bahay Pag-Asa” as an intervention of the city to provide a means of rehabilitation for “children in conflict with the law” (CICL).

Yaranon cited the need to put up an institution that will provide a 24-hour child care and rehabilitation for juvenile delinquents in the city, considering their increasing number and their urgent need for intervention.

Quoting a report, Yaranon said data from the various police stations in the city showed a total of 2,880 CICL apprehended between 2014 and 2016.

“Bahay Pag-asa” refers to a 24-hour child-caring institution established, funded and managed by the local government unit (LGU) or by licensed (accredited) non-government organizations (NGOs) providing short-term residential care for CICL under 18 years old and who are awaiting court disposition of their cases or transfer to other agencies or jurisdiction.

The LGU Baguio City, being a highly-urbanized center, is mandated to build, fund and operate a “bahay pag-asa” based on the standards provided for by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and adopted by the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Council (JJWC) pursuant to Republic Act No. 9344 or the Juvenile Justice and Welfare Act of 2006.

Yaranon proposed that the city’s “bahay pag-asa” be managed by a Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) composed of a social worker, a psychologist or mental health professional, a medical doctor, an educational or guidance counselor and a member of the Barangay Council for the Protection of Children.

She said the team will work on the individualized intervention plan with the child and the child’s family.

The LGU will determine the location of the center and provide a counterpart fund equivalent to the national government contribution of PhP5 million for the center.

“The center (bahay pag-asa) may accept donations, grants and contributions from various sources, in cash or in kind, which will be subjected to the usual government accounting and auditing rules and regulations,” she stated.

The proposed ordinance has been endorsed to the council committee concerned for review and recommendations. PNA-northboundasia.com