BAGUIO CITY –Basic rehabilitation procedures for drug dependents are being undertaken in the city, spearheaded by the City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) headed by Betty Fangasan, it was known in the City Anti-Drug Abuse Council (CADAC) meeting last week.
The academe through the Department of Education (Dep-Ed) offered to organize student groups as with the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency’s (PDEA) Cordillera youth leaders for peer education and information campaigns.
Religious groups, spiritual leaders and representatives were invited by Mayor Mauricio Domogan, CADAC chair to be represented in the group.
The mayor also said that budgetary needs, such as transportation and incidental costs for the surrenderors are to be discussed with the Local Finance Committee. Councilor Michael Lawana inquired for additional budget specially for indigent surrenderors.
According to Fangasan, 275 surrenderors, divided into seven groups were invited for a five-module community-based rehabilitation program, with one batch done and another starting with the first module.
The surrenderor would need a treatment/rehabilitation partner, preferably a relative, Fangasan said. There is a feeling of dismay, however, when the surrenderor comes alone or the treatment partner is substituted by a barangay official, she said. The program however is totally voluntary and could not be forced.
It was known that a substantial monthly subsidy is needed for every surrenderor.
According to PDEA information officer Joseph Calulut, the rehabilitation institution in Dagupan City is for male adults only, for females, in Taguig, and for minors, in Bataan.
Reintegration and monitoring follows, with the local government unit responsible for assistance, possibly even with livelihood.
All efforts are geared towards minimizing or totally eliminating the drug menace, with the Baguio City Police (BCPO), PDEA, CSWDO, Dep-Ed, Health Services Office (HSO), and other concerned agencies duly represented in the meeting./Julie G. Fianza