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Declining quality of life—SWS survey

The quality of life worsened in the past year, according to four out of five adult Filipinos, making it one of the worst trends in Social Weather Station survey history. 

According to the survey that was conducted on September 17 – 20, 82% of adult Filipinos said their quality-of-life got worse, against 11% who said it was unchanged, while six percent said it got better, compared to a year ago. 

The recent survey confirms SWS’s worst trends in survey history, that showed -78 in May and -72 in July during the COVID-19 pandemic. The last time the scores reached similar catastrophic levels was in June 2008 (-50), during rice and oil price hikes.

The alarming scores were recorded in all areas: -80 in the Visayas, -76 in Metro Manila, -75 in Luzon, and -74 in Mindanao. 

There was hardly a difference in the scores of those with jobs and the jobless. The score was significantly worse among those who did not finish college. 

Last September, the adult joblessness rate was at 39.5%. 

Adults who were involuntarily hungry in the last three months had a higher score than those who were not. As a result, the score was -84 among the hungry, compared to only -72 among the non-hungry. 

Those who experienced severe (“often” and “always”) and moderate (“only once” and “a few times”) hunger both tallied a score of -84. 

SWS said the survey question on quality-of-life trends in the past 12 months has been fielded 137 times since April 1983. 

Data were gathered through mobile phone interviews of adult Filipinos (18 years old and above), randomly drawn from a database of mobile phone numbers compiled from SWS national and subnational representative face-to-face surveys since 2017. 

Malacañang said it is saddened by the survey results, which it attributed to the health crisis. 

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque acknowledged that Filipinos feel their life worsened, “that’s because of the pandemic,” he said. 

However, he expressed hope that Filipinos’ quality of life would improve once a vaccine becomes available. 

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