This is one of the most welcome news for the spouses of OFWs. There’s a pending bill in the Senate which proposes that spouses of OFWs be considered as solo parents and should be given the same benefits as the Senior Citizens and PWD. Senate Bill No. 1936 requires that to qualify, one has to have an OFW legitimate spouse and have been working overseas for at least a year. Aside from these requirements, the OFW spouse should also be low and semi-skilled to become eligible for this solo parents benefits.
Senate Bill No. 1936
This bill is among the remarkable provisions that had been initiated by Senator Risa Hontiveros. This expands the existing Solo Parent’s Welfare Act and Parental Leave. Senator Hontiveros said that this proposed benefit for OFW spouses would help in the plight of the solo parents in the country and ease the negatives effects that children living with only one parent have to endure.
The proposal of Hontiveros will grant OFW spouses a 20% discount on health supplements, vaccines, medicines, equipments, and accessories for their minor children. They will also be able to enjoy a 20% discount on all medical consultations, laboratory fees, and hospital bills from both private and government healthcare facilities.
- Additional Privilege
Solo parents will also be able to enjoy a 20% discount on the tuition fees of their children from kindergarten up to tertiary level in both private and public schools. This is aside from scholarship grants. There will also be the same discount rate for both the spouse and children whenever they use recreational facilities. This will obviously give the children a better chance of getting a good education.
- Social Privilege
There are other unbelievable benefits once this is approved; a cutback on inheritance and real estate tax, Php50K exemption on income tax. The solo parent can also claim tax benefits on behalf of the children.
- Offenses and Punishment
All local government offices are required to create their own “Solo Parents Affairs Office” and the barangay will be asked to have a Help desk for said purpose. This is to be able to give prompt assistance to the solo parents within their jurisdiction. Both government and private offices which employs at least a hundred personnel will be asked to put up a day care facility.
A company who will refuse to hire a qualified solo parent will have to pay a fine of Php50K on the first offense. They may also face an imprisonment of more than a year. Succeeding violations may pay a fine of up to Php200K and may face an imprisonment of not more than a couple of years.