ONE-TIME, BIG-TIME RESCUE

Cebu City police to round up street dwellers, mendicants

By: Alven Marie Timtim - CDN Digital | October 15,2020 - 01:28 PM

CEBU CITY, Philippines—The Cebu City Police Office (CCPO) will be rounding up street dwellers and mendicants here in compliance with the directive of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG).

Police Lieutenant Colonel Wilbert Parilla, deputy for operations of the CCPO, said this on Thursday afternoon, October 15, 2020.

“Dunay order ang DILG directing all local government units to remove all mendicants and street dwellers sa atong siyudad. So mag coordinate with the city, including DSWD, PROBE, City Health Office, for the one-time big-time rescue operation,” said Parilla. 

(The DILG has an order directing all local government units to remove all mendicants and street dwellers in our city. So we will coordinate with the city, including the DSWD, PROBE, City Health Office for the one-time, big-time rescue operation.)

Once they rescue these individuals, police will place them in a shelter and start processing requirements so they can be sent back to their respective homes.

Parilla said that the street dwellers and mendicants will be put in a shelter while the database of their information are being listed to identify those who are from Cebu City and from the towns around the province. All expenses for their trips back to their respective towns or cities will be shouldered by the government.

According to Parilla, the order of the DILG is part of measures to stop the spread of COVID-19, which may be acquired by these individuals given that they are more exposed on the streets.

It can be recalled that on Tuesday, October 13, Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella also ordered the rescue of homeless individuals in the city.

Read: Labella orders rescue of homeless individuals, mendicants

Since there has been a rise of minors begging on the streets as well, the mayor has instructed the same agencies to rescue the begging children, bring them home, and issue warnings and citations to parents.

He reminded the public that there is an anti-mendicancy ordinance that prohibits begging and giving to beggars on the streets as this would only encourage dependence. These beggars should be brought to the DSWS for assistance, instead.

Parents who allow their children to beg especially under MGCQ, where minors and below 21-years-old are not allowed to go out, will be cited in violation of this ordinance.

The penalty for the anti-mendicancy ordinance ranges from P500 to P3,000 plus jail time of up to one month.

/bmjo

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