PARTNERSHIP. Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson (center), Social Security System officials Voltaire Agas (left), executive vice president for Branch Operations Sector, and Helen Solito, senior vice president for Visayas Operations Group, show the signed memorandum of agreement for the coverage of the Capitol’s contract of service and job order personnel under the KaltaSSS-Collect Program. The signing event was held at the Provincial Capitol Social Hall in Bacolod City on Tuesday afternoon (Oct. 25, 2022). (Photo courtesy of PIO Negros Occidental)

BACOLOD CITY – Negros Occidental’s provincial government has partnered with the Social Security System (SSS) for the coverage of its 1,279 contract of service (COS) and job order (JO) personnel under the KaltaSSS-Collect Program.

The partnership was sealed during the signing of a memorandum of agreement between Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and SSS officials Voltaire Agas, executive vice president for Branch Operations Sector, and Helen Solito, senior vice president for Visayas Operations Group, in rites held at the Provincial Capitol Social Hall here on Tuesday afternoon.

“This is an acknowledgement that our workforce is the backbone of our society and a testament of our commitment to their welfare and social security protection,” Lacson said.

He added that the Capitol’s COS and JO personnel “should not in any way be left behind in terms of benefits and security by reason and nature of their employment.”

Of the 1,279 to be enrolled in the SSS, 650 are contractual employees while 629 are JO workers.

Under the KaltaSSS-Collect Program, the provincial government will serve as the collecting partner of the SSS.

The contractual and JO workers would be registered as self-employed members while the provincial government would be responsible for remitting their monthly contributions through a salary deduction scheme.

As SSS members, they will be entitled to social security protection during sickness, maternity, retirement, disability, and death, and would also become eligible for various loan programs.

“We are very pleased with your warm reception of this program, which aims to officially cover these workers as SSS self-employed members. Rest assured that SSS will continue to look for ways and to make our programs and services more beneficial, more accessible, more relevant for employers as well as individual members,” Agas said.

Lilani Benedian, SSS Visayas West 1 Division vice president, said the province of Negros Occidental is now the “biggest partner-agent” of the KaltaSSS-Collect Program in Western Visayas. (PNA)