July 19, 2024

The Social Security System is calling on private sector workers affected by the Enhanced Community Quarantine due to the Covid-19 pandemic to coordinate with their employers so they can be applied for financial assistance under the Small Business Wage Subsidy (SBWS) Program.

During the Cordillera Regional Inter-agency Task Group Covid-19 online media briefing, SSS Baguio Information Officer Christian Rillorta said the SBWS is a program spearheaded by the Department of Finance in line with the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act that provides P5,000 to P8,000 cash assistance to affected workers nationwide based on the minimum wage in the region, which in the Cordillera is P5,500.  

Rillorta said the SSS is providing its database of private employees and the use of its online portal for employers – My.SSS account – for the SBWS application. The Bureau of Internal Revenue is in charge of notifying the qualified small businesses based on their database.

The online application for the SBWS started last April 16. Applications will be accepted until May 8.

The government hopes to release the first tranche of cash assistance from May 1 to 15 and the second tranche from May 16 to 30.

Meanwhile, Rillorta said payment for SSS member contribution for the first quarter of 2020 has been moved to June and that there is a three-month moratorium for payment of loans.

He added processing time for salary loans currently offered online due to the ECQ will take longer since SSS would be focused on the SBWS, and as such he appealed for the members’ understanding.

SSS will also be offering the calamity loan assistance program after the SBWS implementation.

“Hopefully our branches will open after May 15. Our clients must also expect changes in operations as health and safety precautions will be included in the system,” Rillorta added.

For more information on the SBWS program and other SSS updates, log on to the Facebook page Philippine Social Security System.  – Carlito C. Dar