Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) is the youth council in the Philippines that represents the youth in local government units (LGUs). SK members play a crucial role in advocating for the rights and welfare of young people in their communities. While SK is considered a voluntary organization, its members are entitled to certain benefits and may receive stipends or allowances depending on the LGU’s policies and available budget.
Sanggunian Kabataan Officials
Republic Act No. 10742, also known as the “Sangguniang Kabataan Reform Act of 2015,” outlines the composition of the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) or Youth Council in the Philippines. According to this law, the SK consists of the following elected officials:
- The SK is made up of 8 members, including a chairperson and 7 councilors, who are chosen by the KK. The SK Chairperson shall appoint a secretary and a treasurer.
Sanggunian Kabataan Officials Qualifications
The qualifications for Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) members in the Philippines are outlined in the law, these qualifications ensure that individuals who wish to become SK members meet certain criteria to effectively represent the youth in their communities.
1. Age Requirement
- SK members must be Filipino citizens and must be at least 18 years old but not more than 24 years old on the day of the elections. This means that individuals who are 25 years old and above are not eligible to run for SK positions.
- An SK candidate must be a resident of the barangay (or community) where they intend to run for SK office for at least one (1) year preceding the day of the election. This residency requirement ensures that SK members are familiar with the needs and issues of their community.
3. Voter Registration
- SK candidates must also be registered voters in the barangay where they intend to run for SK office. This requirement ensures that candidates have an active role in the electoral process of their community.
- While RA 10742 does not specify a minimum education requirement, it is expected that SK members should have at least completed a secondary education to be eligible. However, specific educational qualifications may be set by the Commission on Elections (COMELEC) or local election authorities.
5. Good Moral Character
- Candidates for SK positions should possess good moral character and should not have been convicted of any crime involving moral turpitude.
6. No Relationship with Local Officials
- SK candidates are disqualified if they are related within the second degree of consanguinity or affinity to any incumbent elected national official or to any incumbent elected regional, provincial, city, municipal, or barangay official in the locality where they seek to be elected.
Sanggunian Kabataan Officials Term
- The term of office for Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) members in the Philippines, under the law, must have a fixed term of three (3) years. This term begins on the date of their proclamation as winners in the SK elections.
Sanggunian Kabataan Officials Benefits and Privileges
Meanwhile, here are the privileges and benefits of SK officials as stipulated in the law:
- Be exempt from payment of tuition and matriculation fees while enrolled in any public tertiary school including state colleges and universities and those locally funded public educational institutions within or nearest their area of jurisdiction;
- Be exempt from taking the National Service Training Program-Civic Welfare Training Service (NSTP-CWTS) subjects;
- Be excused from attending their regular classes, if they are currently enrolled in any school, while attending then- regular or special Sangguniang Kabataan meetings, and the Sangguniang Barangay sessions, in the case of the Sangguniang Kabataan chairperson;
- Be provided by the National Government with Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (Philhealth) coverage; and
- Be entitled to receive actual traveling reimbursements as may be authorized by law, and subject to the availability of funds.
RA 11768, An Act Strengthening The Sanggunian Kabataan Amended Parts of “Sangguniang Kabataan Reform Act of 2015,” RA 10742
To rekindle youth involvement in local administration, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte signed on May 6, 2022, a measure extending the powers of the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK). The National Youth Commission signed the Implementing Rules and Regulations (IRR) of Republic Act (RA) No. 11768 on September 2, last year. According to NYC, the IRR was also signed by the Department of Budget and Management’s Secretary Amenah Pangandaman and the Chairperson of the Commission on Elections (COMELEC), George Erwin Garcia.
Sanggunian Kabataan Officials Benefits and Privileges AMENDMENTS
As per the law, Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) members now have access to honorariums and other benefits, such as class exemptions and health insurance. SK members—including the secretary and treasurer—shall receive a monthly honorarium in addition to any other salary they now receive. However, it cannot go over the monthly salary earned by the SK chairperson or go over 25% of the SK funds.
Through local regulation, local government entities may also pay their SK chairperson and appointed members an additional honorarium, social welfare contributions, and hazard pay. The law also stated that SK members are excused from participating in any NSTP components and might skip their regular classes if they attend school while attending their regular or special SK meetings and sessions.
The law also stated that a certification of attendance shall be issued by the secretary of the Sangguniang Kabataan, attested by the chairperson of the Sangguniang Kabataan, duly noted by the Punong Barangay, and submitted to the concerned faculty member and the dean of the educational institution as proof of attendance.
Further, the law said that SK members also have the right to the relevant Civil Service Commission eligibility based on their years of service, as well as coverage under the government-run Philippine Health Insurance.
In the first three months after taking office, SK members must create a three-year rolling plan called the “Comprehensive Barangay Youth Development Plan.
Among other requirements, those who want to join the SK must be between the ages of 18 and 24. Those who want to serve as the SK secretary and treasurer must be between the ages of 18 and 30. A background in business administration, accounting, finance, economics, or bookkeeping is required of the treasurer. The allocation of the relevant TESDA scholarships will prioritize the SK’s newly designated treasurer as well.