More families escaped poverty in 2017 – SWS


Around 31 percent of Filipino families were able to extricate themselves out of poverty in 2017, according to the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey.

The poll, conducted from December 8 to 16, showed the highest rate of Filipino families that transitioned out of poverty since December 2014.

According to the survey, 31 percent of families are now considered “newly non-poor” — 17 percent used to be poor five or more years ago, while 14 percent used to be poor one to four years ago.

“The figure for December 2017 is the highest rate of newly non-poor families since the 13.8 percent recorded when the question was first surveyed in December 2014,” the pollster said.

The survey found that 25 percent described themselves as “always non-poor” since they have never experienced poverty.

A total of 56 percent was “self-rated non-poor,” which included the 31 percent of families who escaped poverty, SWS said.

On the other hand, the poll found that 12 percent of Filipino families fell into poverty—6.4 percent were “usually poor” while 6.0 percent were “newly poor.”

SWS noted that 44 percent considered themselves poor, with 31 percent of them believing they are “always poor” as they have never experienced being non-poor.

Responding to the survey results, Malacañang reiterated the Duterte government’s commitment to lift less fortunate Filipinos out of poverty.

“We take note of the Social Weather Stations survey showing that 31 percent of Filipino families escaped poverty while 12 percent of Filipino families fell into the poverty,” Palace spokesman Harry Roque said in a news conference in Aklan on Saturday.

“This is the reason why we are driven to inclusive development to bring lasting positive benefits to our people. In particular, our target is to lift about six million Filipinos out of poverty,” he added.

Presidential Communications Secretary Martin Andanar gave assurances that President Rodrigo Duterte’s anti-poverty drive would continue to make headway to help the poor sector.

“The President’s program, most especially about poverty alleviation, continues to progress… Our economy will certainly become inclusive. Meaning, it will be felt. [Benefits of improved] economy will trickle down [to the poor],” Andanar told government-run dzRB.

The SWS survey was conducted using face-to-face interviews of 1,200 adults (18 years old and above) nationwide. The survey has a margin of error of ±3 percent nationwide, ±4 percent for Luzon, and ±6 percent each for Metro Manila, Visayas and Mindanao. CATHERINE S. VALENTE


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