Who is Senator Pia S. Cayetano?
For 19 years, Senator Pia S. Cayetano has built a track record for getting the tough job done for the welfare of Filipinos.
She fights for the rightful share of education and health in the national budget as senior vice chair of the Senate finance committee.
Senator Pia has championed several laws to strengthen and future-proof the Philippines’ public health system.
The Sin Tax Reform Laws of 2012 and 2020 were among her major contributions to health legislation. These laws financed healthcare by imposing higher taxes on ‘sin’ products, including tobacco, alcoholic drinks, and e-cigarettes. At the same time, higher sin taxes sought to curb addiction to these harmful products, especially among the youth.
Senator Pia authored and worked extensively on the Inclusive Education Bill, and co-authored the Excellence in Teacher Education Act. Her other education measures include the Ladderized Education Act, Open Distance Learning Act, Open High School System Act, and the Unified Student Financial Assistance System for Tertiary Education Act.
On the economy, Senator Pia shepherded the enactment of the Corporate Recovery and Tax Incentives for Enterprises Act, or CREATE, in 2021. Touted as a ‘game changer’ by economists, CREATE substantially lowered corporate income taxes, and modernized the tax and fiscal incentives system to generate investments and employment.
She currently chairs the Senate’s first-ever Committee on Sustainable Development Goals, Innovation, and Futures Thinking. Among its outputs is the bill seeking to make cities and communities walkable and bike-friendly, and a report on the futures of education.
She is a staunch advocate of the rights and welfare of women and children. Senator Pia led the passage of the country’s first Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act, as well as the Mandatory Infants and Children Health Immunization Act.
Her work acknowledges the dual role of women in society as primary caregivers in the home, and as active members of the workforce. To this end, she worked for the passage of the 105 Days Expanded Maternity Leave Act, Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act, and Magna Carta of Women.
Drawing from her own experiences as an adoptive mom, Senator Pia sought to give children without parental care a loving home. The Domestic Administrative Adoption Act and the Foundling Recognition and Protection Act which she co-authored and co-sponsored, are part of alternative child care reforms that she helped enact, along with the Foster Care Act, which she sponsored in 2009.
Senator Pia is actively engaged in global inter-parliamentary work. She was recently elected as a bureau member of the Inter-Parliamentary Union’s (IPU) Standing Committee on United Nations Affairs. She also chairs the Asia and Pacific Regional Chapter of UNITE, a network of parliamentarians for global health. Previously, she served as President of the IPU Women’s Bureau from 2008 to 2010.
For fighting for women’s reproductive rights Senator Pia was recognized by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Senator Pia continues to pursue this advocacy by sponsoring maternal and child healthcare seminars for mothers and community health workers around the country.
Most recently, she was named as one of the recipients of the 2023 World No Tobacco Day Award. This is a recognition given by the World Health Organization to individuals and groups in six regions for their outstanding work in tobacco control and health promotion.
Senator Pia co-hosts with her brother, Sen. Alan Cayetano, the television legal advice show, ‘Cayetano in Action with Boy Abunda’ or CIA with BA. The program is inspired by ‘Compañero y Compañera,’ the pioneering legal advice show from the 1990s that was hosted by their father, the late Senator Rene Cayetano.
A lawyer, triathlete, and mother. Senator Pia S. Cayetano embodies a Pinay In Action and a woman leader for our times. # (Updated: July 1, 2023)