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Batocabe v Bato: Ako Bicol Rep calls for more rehab facilities

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To compliment the administration’s anti-illicit drug drive, a partylist representative is doggedly pushing for measures that would make drug rehabilitation more accessible to the less fortunate and financially-challenged sectors.

AKO BICOL Congressman Rodel Batocabe filed a bill in the House of Representatives which seeks to institutionalize access to government-run drug treatment centers all over the country. The proposed measure entitled “Accessible Drug Rehabilitation Treatment Act,” aims at providing low-cost or even free treatment for poor addicts, who many say are affected the most by drug addiction.

“Most of the drug addicts here in the Philippines are poor,” Batocabe said, “yet rehabilitation is way, way above their means, so if there is no subsidy from the government these drug addicts will remain as such.”

There are only 45 rehabilitation centers in the country. Of this number, 18 are government-run. In Bicol, there are only two rehabilitation centers with 100 male bed capacities. Women drug-victims are given treatments as outpatients.

“With government-run centers’ capacity bursting to seams, how can we help rehabilitate drug addicts who are mushrooming left and right in our society,” asked Batocabe.

Akin to his dogged resolve to treat and reintroduce drug addicts back to normalcy, the AKO Bicol solon urged government not to give up on victims of drug addiction.

“They need professional help and that they all have the right to be rehabilitated,” Batocabe said.

He also proposed thru House Bill No. 1641 that tax revenues collected from alcohol and tobacco sales should fund the construction and operation of new rehabilitation facilities.