DAGUPAN CITY – The city of Dagupan adds yet another award to its already long list of awards, this time for its relentless campaign against illegal drugs in the city.

This after the Dagupan City Anti-Drug Abuse Council (CADAC) earned the silver award during the Department of Interior and Local Government’s 1st National Anti-Drug Abuse Council (ADAC) Performance Award.

The city was among the 241 out of 1,715 provinces, cities and municipalities that garnered a rating of 85 to 99 points, which corresponded to an adjectival rating of ideal or high functionality.

Factors such as composition, financial capabilities, functionality, and accomplishments of ADACs in different levels of local government units were considered during the ADAC Performance Audit – National Calibration.

These include their financial and physical accomplishments, drug clearing operations and community-based rehabilitation programs.

One major initiative that clinched the national silver award was the city’s Sagip-User Rehabilitation and Empowerment program.

Through Mayor Belen T. Fernandez’s initiative, the SURE program was instituted as the city’s drug rehabilitation community-based program.

The program seeks to help drug surrenderers undergo drug-rehabilitation for free and earn the chance to start a new life by providing free moral and spiritual formations and helping them earn a clean living under the city’s livelihood programs.

The program was a continuous collaborative effort between PNP Dagupan, the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), the City Health Office and religious groups in helping transform the lives of drug surrenderers.

As of September 2018, some 923 drug reformists already graduated from the program and these are being regularly monitored by the Dagupan PNP.

“Our SURE program primarily wants to change the lifestyles of drug surrenderers. Now, we are also working out programs for our plea-bargaining grantees. We are working together with Mayor Fernandez, PNP Dagupan and the City Health Office in implementing these programs that not only help transform the lives of drug surrenderers, but also further eradicate illegal drugs in the city,” said SURE Program focal person Erjon Kevin Pangilinan.

The citation will be awarded to the city during the National ADAC Performance Award to be held December 28 at Tent City, Manila Hotel, Manila. (Verdelle De Vera/CIO)