People Power in the time of COVID: A call for bayanihan for our most vulnerable, front-liners

STATEMENT OF SEN. FRANCIS PANGILINAN

People Power in the time of COVID: A call for bayanihan for our most vulnerable, front-liners

Today, we are fighting an unseen, mobile, rapidly-reproducing enemy invading our homes and communities, killing the weakest and most vulnerable. The real battle is in the frontlines, in the grassroots, and at that level every able-bodied citizen’s contribution and sacrifice will be decisive in defeating the pandemic and its impact across the nation.

Lubos at patuloy tayong nagpasasalamat sa mga taong nakikiisa para labanan at pigilan ang COVID-19, ang ating mga front-line worker — in clinics, hospitals, and laboratories; in food production; and in delivering these essential items and services to them and the most vulnerable.

Nagpapakita sila ng tapang, at kailangan nating palawakin at pagtibayin ang tapang ng ating suporta.

While the national government will be allocating more funds through the special session of Congress, we should do whatever we can to help survive this pandemic. Kailangan nating magsama-sama at magtulungan.

Magsimula tayo sa ating sariling pamayanan. Focus on our front-liners: doctors, nurses, and other medical staff healing the sick and preventing the spread of the disease; workers in local government (including barangay), agriculture and food manufacturing, transport and logistics, farmers and fisher folk ensuring our daily sustenance and preventing food shortages and hunger in lockdown areas; and soldiers and policemen enforcing the quarantine.

All our front-liners — health workers in the hospital nearest us, our LGUs and barangay officials, our sari-sari store owners, and those who bring these life support systems — must be equipped, funded, capacitated, organized, and effectively mobilized.

Supporting them in our respective localities either in our individual capacities or through our clubs, civic groups, and organizations is CRITICAL.

We call on those who are able: Contribute food and help distribute PPEs and other medical supplies to hospitals and communities in need. Give money or provide logistics so that we can help our frontline workers help us. (Here is a list of hospitals and civic groups’ efforts we can support under the heading FRONTLINERS, prepared by a volunteer: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1mIY9cAz1d0GVuaFGH3Rgxcj8JWfIJzjZVekzGHT7bKw/htmlview?pli=1&fbclid=IwAR3aDdjQeSjHiVlrW_SMwgbW1mlJKotZBVs_PQCJeONdo4j-7QnoMS6qGRU# )

Walang katiyakan ang panahong ito. But the collective human spirit, organized and mobilized toward a common goal, to overcome challenges is more powerful than any virus. How we work together will define how we will survive. Ito ang ating People Power.

Nawa’y gabayan, pagpalain, at protektahan tayong lahat ng Diyos.