Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Undersecretary Malou Turalde, together with some employees of the DSWD Central Office  went to Philippine National Police’s Camp Karingal on Monday to check on the situation of the eight senior citizens detained there.

The senior citizens are members of the urban poor community group KADAMAY who were arrested on April 3 when the Quezon City Police District Station 7 raided their urban poor community in Barangay Apollo, Tandang Sora.

With DSWD as the focal agency overseeing the concerns of the elderly, Usec. Turalde expressed concern about the condition of the senior citizens, whose ages range from 64 to 83.

The senior citizens have medical conditions which make life inside detention more difficult for them.   Some are suffering from heart ailment and hypertension, others have diabetes.  Two detainees  are also showing signs of mental condition.  The senior citizens need constant medication, as well as a stress-free environment.

Usec. Turalde said that while DSWD does not concern itself with conflicts in housing and housing laws as these are outside the mandate of the DSWD, the Department is appealing for the release of the senior citizens for humanitarian reasons.

The Undersecretary said, “Sa kanilang dating sitwasyon ay mahirap na, ngunit mas malubha pa ngayong sila ay nasa Camp Karingal.  Ang mga matatanda at may sakit ay naghihirap sa loob, kung kaya’t umaapela kami na sila sana ay palayain na, bilang malasakit sa kanilang katandaan at dinaranas na karamdaman (Their situation prior to detention is already difficult, being detained at Camp Karingal is even more deplorable.  We appeal for their release as a show of compassion considering their old age and well-being).” ###