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SWS: Little improvement posted in Filipinos' self-rated poverty

January 19, 2012 8:13am
Despite the Aquino administration's "record-high" ratings, there was hardly any improvement in the way Filipinos saw themselves with regards to poverty and hunger in 2011, a report by survey firm Social Weather Stations said.
 
The 2012 SWS Survey Review of the Social Weather Stations presented by SWS on Tuesday was based on its four quarterly surveys in 2011, and a special national survey conducted in July 2011, SWS media partner BusinessWorld reported Thursday. 
 
"Poverty and hunger have both been flat for several years ... The surveys provide realistic and updated poverty thresholds," the BusinessWorld report quoted SWS president Mahar Mangahas as saying.
 
In 2011, 49 percent of the families surveyed by the SWS regarded their families as poor, just a tad higher than the 48 percent in 2010.
 
The poverty threshold—what a poor family would need to meet basic needs—is around P8,000 per month, with half of it allotted for food and the remaining half for implicit non-food items, said Mangahas.
 
But those based in Metro Manila said they need at least P12,000 per month to meet their needs and consider themselves not poor.
 
As for the families in the rest of Luzon as well as in Visayas and Mindanao, they pegged their poverty threshold as P7,700, P8,000 and P6,000 respectively per month.
 
Incidence of hunger
 
The incidence of hunger remained at almost the same level as 2011 and 2010, according to the SWS report.
 
It said total hunger increased by 0.8 percentage point in 2011 to 19.9 percent, an increase from the 19.1 percent in 2010.
 
Aquino government ratings
 
The report also noted the Aquino administration has attained a record-high score of positive 56 net satisfaction rating compared to the Arroyo administration.
 
The government scored higher in the following areas: promoting the welfare of overseas Filipino workers, fighting terrorism, reconciliation with Muslim rebels, reconciliation with communist rebels, helping the poor, administration on foreign relations, eradicating graft and corruption, fighting crimes, fighting inflation, improving the quality of children’s education, telling the truth to the people and deciding quickly on important problems.
 
According to SWS, the Aquino administration needs to improve on ensuring speedy justice. The SWS report revealed that 75 percent of respondents have noted the 2009 Maguindanao massacre court case is not moving as fast as it should. –KG, GMA News
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