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Pasig News

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Pasig City has hailed Barangay San Antonio (BSA) as a model village for its community-based program in reintegrating drug surrenderers into mainstream society through employment.

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) recently cited Pasig City as one of the local government units in the National Capital Region having the best practices under the Community-based Drug Rehabilitation and Reintegration Program (CBDRP) —which provides a recovery program for illegal drug victims.

Zenaida Concepcion, head of the Anti-Drug Abuse Council of Pasig (ADCOP), said BSA under the leadership of chairman Raymond Lising, adopted commendable programs for assisting drug surrenderers in reforming their lives so they won’t return to their old ways.

BSA recorded a total of 26 drug surrenderers since the government launched a program for drug users and pushers to help them change and totally reject drug use.

According to Concepcion, Lising employed at least 10 surrenderers as contractual workers in the barangay.

Among the 30 villages in Pasig, Barangay San Antonio has the most number of employed drug surrenderers.

“This initiative of Chairman Lising integrates them back to the society by providing them with jobs after undergoing rehabilitation. Barangay San Antonio ensured them that when they finish the seven-month rehab program, they will be employed by the barangay giving them a sense of security,” Concepcion added.

Meanwhile, the other 16 drug surrenderers are now privately employed in various companies, while others have started their own businesses.

BSA has also provided them all necessary assistance while undergoing rehabilitation, such as providing them transportation from their house to the rehab facility in Bicutan, Taguig.

Concepcion said Lising also helped the families of the drug surrenderers undergoing rehabilitation by providing them their basic needs.

“Because of this initiative, drug surrenderers are at peace since their families are well taken care of. This lessened their stress and worry while under rehab,” she said.

After their rehabilitation, Barangay San Antonio continuously monitors the surrenderers and their families through home visitation to know their current situations.

“Barangay San Antonio has been responsive and active in their duties in cascading drug prevention and control programs in their barangay,” she said.

“Angat ang programa ni Chairman Lising (Chairman Lising’s program stands out) when it comes to CBRDP. That’s why we are grateful to him because he sustains the programs he promised to drug surrenderers,” the ADCOP head continued.

Pasig City is strictly monitoring the Barangay Anti-Drug Abuse Councils (BADACs) of the 30 villages in the city to ensure their rate of functionality and is implementing the drug abuse prevention advocacy campaign of the government.

For his part, Lising vowed to sustain their various programs against drug use such as drug awareness and prevention campaigns.

“We, in Barangay San Antonio, believe in second chances that is why we are giving our drug surrenderers a chance to change their lives because they find difficulty in landing a job, because of the stigma of being a former drug user which is sometimes being used as grounds for rejection. We want them to become productive members of the society,” the BSA chairman said. “We are conducting surprise drug tests and we monitor them and their families to ensure that they are no longer into illegal drugs.”

In 2017, the BSA was declared a drug-cleared barangay by the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA). The village earned the status based on the parameters set by the PDEA in accordance with the Dangerous Drug Board regulation.

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