Citizens Disaster Response Center | CDRC

Congress Urged: Don’t Wait for Another Ondoy or Pepeng! Pass the DRRM Bill Now!

19

Jan 10

0

drrnet logoThe Philippines is undoubtedly a disaster-prone country (both natural and human-induced) yet what we have is just Presidential Decree No. 1566, a 31-year-old law which merely focuses on short-term preparedness and emergency response.

Lack of a clear law to address DISASTER RISK REDUCTION AND MANAGEMENT (DRRM) has only hurt the communities more, especially the poor and marginalized. Latest to strike were typhoon Ondoy last September 26, which left more than a million people homeless and damaged PhP 4.7 billion worth of properties; and Pepeng a week later, which left 375 people dead and damaged PhP 1.8 billion worth of crops. At least 25 typhoons hit the country yearly, putting more poor communities in distress.
But all is not too late. Pending at the 14th Congress is the DRRM Bill which seeks to create a new policy but to expand coverage of PD No. 1566, helping communities to prepare for disasters, reduce risks and become more resilient even in the face of worst calamities.
With eight days to go before the 14th Congress adjourns, the DRR NETWORK PHILIPPINES* urges lawmakers to finally pass the DRRM Bill (House Bill 6985 version). It firmly believes that while calamities cannot be avoided, our legislators could do something to help communities prepare for and mitigate effects of disasters.

The Philippines is undoubtedly a disaster-prone country (both natural and human-induced) yet what we have is just Presidential Decree No. 1566, a 31-year-old law which merely focuses on short-term preparedness and emergency response.

Lack of a clear law to address DISASTER RISK REDUCTION AND MANAGEMENT (DRRM) has only hurt the communities more, especially the poor and marginalized. Latest to strike were typhoon Ondoy last September 26, which left more than a million people homeless and damaged PhP 4.7 billion worth of properties; and Pepeng a week later, which left 375 people dead and damaged PhP 1.8 billion worth of crops. At least 25 typhoons hit the country yearly, putting more poor communities in distress.

But all is not too late. Pending at the 14th Congress is the DRRM Bill which seeks to create a new policy but to expand coverage of PD No. 1566, helping communities to prepare for disasters, reduce risks and become more resilient even in the face of worst calamities.

With eight days to go before the 14th Congress adjourns, the DRR NETWORK PHILIPPINES* urges lawmakers to finally pass the DRRM Bill (House Bill 6985 version). It firmly believes that while calamities cannot be avoided, our legislators could do something to help communities prepare for and mitigate effects of disasters.

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*DRR Network Philippines is a national tertiary formation of more than 300 Philippine and international civil society organizations, communities, practitioners and advocates adhering to the Hyogo Framework for Action (HFA) on disaster risk reduction and management and implementing community-based disaster risk management. CDRC is a member of the network.