FREE HAIRCUT. A barber from Laoag City provides free haircuts to his townmates in this undated photo. As a Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers beneficiary, he was asked by the Ilocos Norte government to render haircut services in time for Fathers’ Day. (Photo by Leilanie Adriano)

LAOAG CITY – Some 780 informal workers in Ilocos Norte received Friday a total of PHP3.9 million worth of livelihood assistance from the Department of Labor and Employment and the Ilocos Norte government.

Among the latest batch of beneficiaries were daily wage earners from the municipalities of Banna, Marcos, Nueva Era and Dingras, who received PHP5,100 each.

Instead of the usual 10-day duty, with four hours of work a day for workers of the Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD) program to earn at least PHP3,950, the Ilocos Norte government has increased their payout to PHP5,100 so they can render community service for 15 days.

During the cash distribution of livelihood aid at the Banna gymnasium on Friday, Governor Matthew Joseph Manotoc thanked all supporters for their all-out support of Team Marcos during the recent national and local elections.

To assist the disadvantaged workers during the pandemic, a total of PHP50 million through the government’s TUPAD, the community-based package of assistance that provides emergency employment, has been downloaded to Ilocos Norte upon the request of Senator Ma. Imelda Josefa “Imee” Marcos.

“As we have mentioned before, we will make sure that each one of you who supported us during the election will feel the prize of winning,” Manotoc said as he vowed to continue and implement more programs and projects to provide more jobs and livelihood opportunities to Ilocanos.

Aside from the continuing distribution of cash aid to TUPAD beneficiaries in various parts of the province, a total of 703 individuals from Dingras town who belong to the poor, marginalized, and vulnerable sectors were given financial aid under the Department of Social Welfare and Development Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situation.

Each beneficiary is entitled to PHP3,000 to help poor families, particularly those whose family members were affected by the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic. (PNA)