Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor

Brief History

Poverty has always been in our midst. Concerted efforts by different sectors barely scratch its surface, hence, it remains a pressing problem.

The influx of migrants from rural to urban areas in the 1960s magnified the worsening situation of the poor, particularly the urban poor. The fear of ejection and violence haunted them as they struggled for their place in society. When their situation worsened during the 1980s, urban poor groups banded together in search of possible solutions to their problems as well as opportunities for consultation on matters that affect them.

On April 10, 1986, a significant number of urban poor marched to Malacañang asking for a moratorium on demolitions. It was then that the Presidential Arm on Urban Poor Affairs (PAUPA) was created. This was subsequently changed to Presidential Committee for the Urban Poor (PCUP) as a result of a National Consultation Workshop by two major urban poor alliances on May 30-June 2, 1986.

The name Presidential Council for the Urban Poor was later adopted in lieu of the Presidential Committee for the Urban Poor.

Finally, on December 8, 1986, the Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor was created by President Corazon C. Aquino through Executive Order No. 82 “to serve as a direct link of the urban poor to the government in policy formulation and program implementation addressed to their needs”.

Significant gains were attained but the advent of urbanization lured more people to the metropolis and compounded the problem. Eighteen years later, on September 27, 2004, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, issued Executive Order No. 364, transforming the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) into the Department of Land Reform (DLR) which now includes the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) and the PCUP to take charge of ancestral domain reform and urban land reform, respectively.