The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reiterates that beneficiaries of the Social Pension for Indigent Senior Citizens who are sickly, frail, fragile, with disability are not required to personally claim their stipend during payout to avoid untoward incidents that may be detrimental to their well-being.

According to the DSWD Omnibus Guidelines in the Implementation of the Social Pension for Indigent Senior Citizens, the nearest relatives of the beneficiaries can claim the stipend provided that they bring with them an authorization letter from the social pensioner and their identification cards as authorized representatives during the payout. Aside from the actual payout, the stipend can also be given to the social pensioners through door-to-door delivery scheme.

DSWD made this reiteration following an incident in Catigbian, Bohol, where a social pensioner passed awayduring a payout on September 26, 2019.

The Department, through Field Office VII, expresses its condolences to the bereaved family and is already coordinating with the local government unit (LGU) for the provision of appropriate assistance.

The Department pointed out that before a payout is conducted, concerned DSWD-Field Office coordinates with the host LGU for necessary preparations such as the provision of well-ventilated venue that can protect the senior citizens from heat and rain; availability of seats and drinking water for all beneficiaries; presence of police officer/tanod for security, peace and order; and presence of medical staff and ambulance in case of emergencies.

DSWD recognizes that working closely with LGUs will lead to the efficient implementation of the Social Pension program. -30-