The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and the Social Security System (SSS) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for social security coverage of DILG’s own job order or contract of service workers which was commemorated by a virtual signing ceremony held on 16 August 2021.
DILG Secretary Eduardo M. Año was represented by Assistant Secretary for Human Resource Development Florida M. Dijan while SSS President Aurora C. Ignacio was represented by Senior Vice President Mario R. Sibucao as signing officials for the event.
Under the MOU, DILG’s contract of service and job order workers will be classified as self-employed members of SSS. Government contract of service and job order workers are not covered by the Government Service Insurance System due to their employment status. Through the MOU program, those working in the DILG will be covered by the SSS and can avail of SSS benefits in times of contingencies.
The MOU also states that the DILG will act as the Coverage & Collection Partner of SSS.As a collecting partner, SSS authorized the DILG to collect and remit their monthly contributions through a salary-deduction scheme under SSS’ KaltaSSS-Collect Program.
“In case these contract of service and job order workers ceased to work from the DILG, they can still continue paying their SSS contributions as voluntary members so they can still enjoy the benefits and loan privileges provided by SSS,” Ignacio said.
The MOU also allows DILG permanent or regular employees to join the program and continue paying contributions as voluntary members.
DILG Assistant Secretary Dijan said that their agency is looking forward to the partnership that will benefit their job order and contract of service workers. She added that with the MOU, DILG accepts its role in assisting interested workers to register or enroll at SSS and in ensuring the prompt remittance of their SSS contributions.
SSS SVP Sibucao hopes that such partnership can inspire other government entities to do the same for the social security protection of job order workers in government who are also colleagues, partners, and friends in rendering public service to all.
During the virtual MOU signing, Sibucao noted that DILG and SSS are partners already since 2014 in encouraging local government units (LGUs) toward SSS coverage of their job order and contract of service workers. He added that the partnership paved the way for the social security coverage of more than 219,000 job orders workers among 1,374 LGUs nationwide as of June 2021.
SSS President and Chief Executive Officer Aurora C. Ignacio expressed her elation that the pension fund can provide social security protection to fellow workers in the government. “In these challenging times, it is significant for job order and contract of service workers to have social security protection which is a basic necessity of every private or public sector worker,” Ignacio explained.
As SSS members, they shall become entitled to social security protection arising from contingencies such as sickness, maternity, retirement, disability, and death. They shall also become eligible to SSS’ various loan programs.
As of June 2021, SSS has partnered with 1,374 local government units (LGUs), 436 national government agencies, 101 state universities and colleges (SUCs), and 63 local water districts covering 312,746 job order workers through the KaltaSSS-Collect Program with total collection exceeding P3.9 billion.
Ignacio urged other government agencies and LGUs to have their job order and contract of service workers covered by SSS through the KaltaSSS-Collect Program. “Regardless of their employment status, workers deserve to have a basic safety net in times of contingencies through SSS membership,” she concluded.
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