THE City Government of Bacolod has inaugurated the Balay Silangan Reformation Facility on Lacson Extension, Barangay Singcang-Airport, Bacolod City on Wednesday, July 21, 2021.
The inauguration and blessing of the facility were led by Mayor Evelio Leonardia along with Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA)-Western Visayas Assistant Regional Director Donelyn Hermedez; PDEA-Negros Occidental Provincial Director Nicolas Gomez; Department of Social Services and Development (DSSD) head Pacita Tero, City Engineer’s Office head Engr. Aladino Agbones; City Anti-Drug Abuse Council (Cadac); Bacolod City Police Office; Social Action Center; the Department of the Interior and Local government, and other city officials.
“I am so glad that we have this kind of facility because it is badly needed. This is all about reformation and giving second chances to drug offenders,” Leonardia said.
Balay Silangan, the national drug reformation program, offers temporary refuge with the objection of reforming drug offenders into self-sufficient and law-abiding members of society.
In 2018, PDEA chose Bacolod City as one of the pilot sites of the Balay Silangan Reformation Program in the country.
“It is a great thing that it happened here in Bacolod—being a pilot city again. There are only four pilot areas for this project: Nueva Ecija for Luzon, Caloocan City for National Capital Region (NCR), Malungon (in Sarangani Province) for Mindanao, and Bacolod City for the Visayas,” Leonardia said.
The P5-million two-story facility, a drug reformation center, will be operated by the city government and the PDEA.
Project Engineer Amy Tentia said the fund was taken from the City Mayor’s Office- Other Structures 2018. Construction started on March 28, 2019 and was completed on March 20, 2020.
Meanwhile, Leonardia said the City is currently constructing a P35-million Bacolod City Drug Rehabilitation Center in Barangay Alijis.
Of this amount, P15 million is from the Dangerous Drugs Board while the P20 million is from the City Government.
The rehabilitation center will cater to drug surrenderers with severe substance use disorder.
“Now our city has the facilities that can help our anti-illegal drugs program, and that we have a solid contribution to the program. We hope that our campaign will be successful,” Leonardia said.