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DOF: SSS members receive P2.62-B jobless insurance benefits

September 21, 2021 - Tuesday 6:09 PM by GDM

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The Department of Finance on Tuesday said the Social Security System (SSS) has so far provided about 196,000 members of its pension fund a total of P2.62 billion in unemployment insurance benefits.

In a statement, the DOF said most of the jobless benefits were released during the pandemic.

Specifically, Finance Secretary and Social Security Commission (SSC) chairman Carlos Dominguez III said P2.35 billion or 90 percent of the cash grants under the SSS Unemployment Insurance Benefit (UIB) program were released from March 2020 to June 2021. 

Dominguez said in his letter to the Senate that, as of June this year, 173,791 out of the total of 196,021 SSS members who availed of the UIB received them during the pandemic period. 

“Implemented effective March 2019, the UIB program is among the key institutional responses of the SSS to the COVID-19 pandemic for its affected members since March 2020,” said Dominguez in his letter addressed to Senate President Vicente Sotto III. 

Dominguez’s letter was in response to the query of Senator Grace Poe Llamanzares, one of the vice chairpersons of the Senate finance committee, regarding the provision of financial assistance to unemployed workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The inquiry was made during the Sept. 9, 2021 briefing by the Development Budget Coordination Committee (DBCC) on the proposed National Expenditure Program (NEP) for 2022 to the Senate finance committee chaired by Sen. Sonny Angara. 

 Amid the pandemic, the SSS “has made it easier and more convenient for members to apply” for UIB claims by allowing applications online through the My.SSS member portal in the SSS website, Dominguez said. 

 The SSS also started using electronic payment systems in releasing the UIB and other benefit claims in line with Dominguez’s instructions for the pension fund to digitize its system in order to speed up the grant of loans and benefits to its members.