QUEZON CITY – The Department of Human Settlements and Urban Development (DHSUD) will be playing a key role in a newly created task force that will spearhead the government’s recovery and rehabilitation efforts in the aftermath of recent typhoons.

The DHSUD has been tapped as among the member-agencies of the Build Back Better Task Force that is co-chaired by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Department of Public Works and Highways.

Through the Task Force, the government intends to use a science-based approach in pushing for rehabilitation and recovery efforts in areas severely affected by typhoons “Rolly,” “Siony,” “Tonyo” and “Ulysses.”

As a member of the Task Force, the  DHSUD will lead the Stronger Shelter and Resilient Settlement Committee, whose main tasks are to facilitate the relocation of poor households exposed to climate change-related hazards and oversee the construction of safe evacuation facilities.

“What we need now is an assessment on the ground which can be taken from the post-disaster risk assessment that should be conducted by the Office of the Civil Defense in coordination with all the government agencies on the ground,” said DHSUD Secretary Eduardo Del Rosario during the Task Force’s organization meeting held via a video conference on Friday.

“So we can immediately get readings on the ground and included therein are the LGUs (local government units), affected LGUs. All we need to do is to have that post-disaster team that will go the provinces affected by these three typhoons to give us a full picture of the damages and give an assessment and that will be the basis of our Task Force on what rehabilitation concerns that we must undertake,” the housing czar added.

The Department of Interior and Local Government, the National Economic Development Authority, the Department of Budget and Management, the National Housing Authority, the Land Registration Authority, the Department of Social Welfare and Development, the Local Water Utilities Administration, the National Electrification Administration and the DENR are the members of the Stronger Shelter and Resilient Resettlement Committee.

Malacañang said that the Build Better Task Force will complement the operations of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council as the Department of Disaster Resilience which being proposed by some lawmakers is not yet established.

The Build Back Better Task Force also seeks to establish more resilient communities around the country,  as well as further bolster LGUs’ disaster-preparedness programs. (30)