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Poverty in the Philippines: Access to Basic Services

Poverty in the Philippines: Access to Basic Services

Jan 25, 2012

Poverty in the Philippines: Access to Basic Services (Note: This piece is a segment from a larger article "Poverty in the Philippines: A Profile", showcased in Focus-Philippines' upcoming Poverty Policy Review) Educational Attainment of Household Heads in different Income Strata
Attainment Level

Under P 40,000

P 40,000 – 59,999

 P 60,000 – 99, 999

Families Reporting (in ‘000) Share of Total (%) Families Reporting Share of Total (%) Families Reporting Share of Total (%)
Philippines in General 759 4.1 of Pop 1605 8.6 of Pop 4107 22.3 of Pop
No Grade Completed 102 13.4 106 6.6 169 4.1
Elementary 379 50.0 666 41.4 1269 30.9
Elementary Completed 166 21.8 402 25.0 1030 25.1
High School 55 7.2 198 12.3 602 14.7
High School Completed 41 5.4 185 11.5 729 17.8
College 11 1.4 38 2.4 239 5.8
Academic Degree Holder 6 0.8 11 0.7 68 1.7
Source: National Statistics Office, FIES (2009) * - refers to negligible value Poor people do not only receive less income— they also achieve less, educationally. As browsing educational attainment across income strata shows, the heads of poor households in the Under P40000 bracket are far less likely than heads in the P 40,000 – P59,999 and P60,000 – P99,999 segments to have completed elementary school, and have entered high school. Their ranks have the most number of heads who have not even completed a single grade level (13.4%), as well as those who have entered, but not finished elementary schooling (50.0%). As for high school and college, it is equally clear that a smaller number of people from the lowest income bracket enter and complete these academic levels than those of the higher two. While 0.8% of the families with less than P40000 income finish college, compared to the 0.7% of the families in the P40000 – P59,999 bracket, this difference is negligible, given that more than double the number of families fall under the latter bracket than the former. Access to Minimum Basic Needs, by Income Strata
MBN Indicator

2002

2004

2008*

Lowest 30% Highest 70% Lowest 30% Highest 70% Lowest 30% Highest 70%

Survival

Safe Drinking Water

67.5

85.4

65.4

86.5

-

-

Sanitary Toilet

70.3

92.9

69.7

93.2

-

-

Electricity

50.5

91.2

52.8

91.3

63.8

92.5

Security

Sturdy Housing

42.6

82.2

43.4

82.2

58.2

85.3-

Owned House and Lot

61.9

68.5

60.7

65.9

64.7

70.3

Head Gainfully Employed

88.3

78.1

91.8

80.9

90.2

78.5

Family Member >18 yo. Gainfully Employed

95.8

92.5

97.1

92.4

-

-

Enabling

Children 6-12 yo. in Primary School

92.2

90.5

91.4

90.1

-

-

Children 13-16 yo. in High School

66.8

83.3

63.0

82.0

-

-

Working Children 5-17 yo.

20.7

8.1

23.1

8.0

-

-

Philhealth Member

6.9

36.3

28.3

47.5

-

-

Source: National Statistics Office— Annual Poverty Indicators Survey (2004), Poverty in the Philippines:Causes, Constraints and Opportunities— ADB (2009) *2008 figures from the Annual Poverty Indicators Survey (2008) (2002) (2004) Access to Infrastructures, 1998 vs. 2004/2005 (%)
Region Road Density Access to Potable Water Access to Electricity Irrigation Serviced
1988 2005 1988 2004 1988 2004 1988 2005
Philippines 0.27 0.78 71.9 80.1 59.9 79.5 46.4 45.2
NCR 4.29 15.55 92.0 85.7 97.6 99.0 - -
Central Luzon 0.61 0.94 96.0 96.2 83.4 94.4 67.4 64.5
Bicol 0.14 0.43 80.2 87.9 61.3 78.4 54.3 42.8
CAR 0.12 0.33 66.2 76.2 51.7 75.5 35.3 75.5
Western Visayas 0.35 0.77 54.4 73.4 43.5 72.6 59.4 39.4
Western Mindanao 0.10 1.11 40.8 59.7 43.4 54.5 58.5 48.4
Southern Mindanao 0.12 0.32 73.6 69.9 52.1 70.9 41.0 36.3
ARMM 0.13 0.34 22/9 40.9 20.2 44.0 17.9 14.8
Source: Poverty in the Philippines:Causes, Constraints and Opportunities— ADB (2009), National Statistics Office, National Statistical Coordination Board The poor are not only limited in their ability to access educational facilities— this lack of access clearly pierces to the domain of basic needs and social infrastructures such as electricity, health care, and potable water. On a year-to-year basis, levels of access appear to be increasing on the whole, especially for the richer 70% of the population. But the disparities of access between this 70% and the lower 30% are stark and arresting. In 2006, for example, while 90.4% of the higher income brackets had access to safe drinking water, the lower 30% suffered a corresponding 65.4% access. 82.2% of the former had access to sturdy housing; only 43.4% of the latter did. On the end of employment, one surprising trend is that the poor household heads turn out more gainfully employed (91.8%), compared to their more affluent counterparts. The same appears to be the case of the employment of their youth older than 18 years old—  97.1% vs. 92.4%. Another way of exploring disparities of access elicits the theme of geography. Here, poorer provinces and regions, such as ARMM, Northern Mindanao, and Western Visayas clearly have less radiant terms of access to potable water, irrigation, electricity and roads compared to more affluent areas like NCR and Central Luzon. In 2004, for instance, 99% of the population of NCR had access to electricity, while only 44.0%, 54.5%, 70.9% had such access in ARMM, Western Mindanao and Southern Mindanao. Another interesting trend lies in access to potable water in NCR, which has deteriorated from 92.0% to 85.7% between 1988 and 2004. This portends a growing urban poor segment of the metropolitan population with no access to clean water resources.

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