Pangasinan inmates sell handmade products online

BALUNGAO, Pangasinan – Various handmade products made by persons deprived of liberty (PDL) at the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) District Jail here can now be bought through an online store.

Jail officer 1 Sharifa Francia said selling of the PDL’s products became limited amid restrictions due to the pandemic, prompting them to open a Shopee account where their goods can be availed of.

“This is more convenient and fast as compared to when our staff here deliver the products to the consumers,” she said in an interview on Tuesday.

The initiative is part of the livelihood program of BJMP Balungao to provide income to the PDLs while they are inside the facility.

Among the products being sold through their Shopee account (bdj_livelihood_products) are rattan baskets, beaded wall ornaments, beaded bonsai trees, diesel kalan, and made-to-order aluminum and glass works, among others.

“We will be introducing more new products soon by God’s grace,” Francia said.

The product prices range from PHP180 to PHP900 each.

“The livelihood program of BJMP has been established for the past years. For instance, basket-making has already been a source of income for most PDL for five years now,” she said.

Francia said before the pandemic, the PDLs’ income was given to their families while some saved for themselves.

“The capital for the products was provided by civic and religious groups,” she added.  Hilda Austria / PNA –