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Manila – In celebration of Pride Month, employees from the Institute of Labor Studies participated in the webinar hosted by the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS) titled “Gender Gaps in Social Protection Coverage in the Philippines,” last June 18 via the Cisco Webex platform.

The webinar featured the PIDS study titled “Towards Inclusive Social Protection Coverage in the Philippines: Examining gender disparities,” authored and presented by PIDS Research Fellow Ms. Aubrey D. Tabuga. The study examined Filipinos’ access to social protection, the existing gender disparities in the coverage of current government programs, and the circumstances of workers and households who have no access to these programs.

The study likewise identified gaps in the coverage of social insurance programs such as SSS, GSIS, and the National Health Insurance, and sought insights to aid in program and policy design in improving social protection coverage.

The research revealed that women are less likely to be covered by social insurance than men, controlling for other factors like human capital, economic condition, sector of work, importance of remittances, and agricultural income to total income. Corollary, women not in the labor force face multiple barriers in exercising their right to employment, and in turn their access to social insurance.

As part of her recommendations, Ms. Tabuga noted that expanding membership in social insurance is vital, and that there is a necessity to enhance the implementation or enforcement of current labor policies that ensure the inclusion of all eligible private sector workers would benefit many male workers who are non-members because a large proportion of this group are workers in private establishments.