MANILA - Barangays should soon be mandated to build halfway houses for detained minors due to lack of space in social centers, an official of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) said Friday.
DILG would prioritize the project since barangay halls lacked amenities for detained minors despite its big budgets, Undersecretary for Barangay Affairs Martin Diño told radio DZMM.
“Milyon-milyon ang pera [ng barangay] pero hindi man lang sila naglagay [ng space] kasi, gabi-gabi, ang daming naka istambay na bata. Obligasyon ‘yan ng barangay,” the former barangay chairman said.
(Barangays have millions of money but they won’t even put a space when a lot of children are detained there every night. It’s the barangays obligation.)
The project would provide shelter for offenders captured in tambay operations, which should be spearheaded by barangay officials instead of police, Diño said.
“Ang pulis, back-up lang natin yan. Ang dapat manguna diyan ang mga kapitan pati yung ngayon, yung mga hinuhuli na bawal uminom sa kalsada,” he said.
(Policemen are only for backups. The captain should spearhead there and the operations for illegal drinkers on the street.)
“Number one na nakalagay na trabaho ng kapitan is to implement all laws at saka all ordinance,” Diño added.
(The number one job of a captain is to implement all laws and all ordinance.)
Meanwhile, detained minors would be provided food, shelter, and counseling by officials from the Department of Social Welfare and Development inside the halfway houses until they are claimed by their guardians.
Parents would also receive counseling in the center but they should be sent to prison since they are liable for their children’s actions under the Family Code of the Philippines, Diño said.
“Masyado lang maluwag ‘tong gobyerno na ‘to eh. Talagang merong kulong ang nanay at tatay,” he said. “Kaya lang, ‘pag nakulong…‘yung mga bata, walang magpo-provide.”
(The government is just too carefree. Mothers and fathers should be sent to prison. But if they were detained, no one would provide for their children.)
“I hope palakasin natin ang DSWD para ‘pag hindi kaya ng magulang na alagaan ang anak nila, kukuhaanin ng gobyerno,” he continued.
(I hope we could strengthen the DSWD so when parents can’t take care of their children, the government would take them.)
The ‘Silungan sa Barangay’ project, proposed by DSWD Officer in Charge Virginia Oroga, would be the first agenda for all incoming barangay captains on July.