Garbage collectors, street sweepers, janitors and other workers involved in sanitizing our communities should be considered frontliners just as crucial as medical staff in the fight against COVID-19, said Senator Imee Marcos on Sunday.
Marcos called on the government to ensure financial aid like stipends, if not steady employment, for sanitation workers who have a clear role in reducing the spread of disease. They are employed in hospitals, government offices, condominiums, super market and other business establishments.
“Let us not forget the garbage collectors, street sweepers and janitors who help us fight COVID-19. They are risking their lives in their job,” Marcos said.
Anticipating that an ongoing lockdown in Luzon would be extended, Marcos filed Senate Bill 1414 to sustain frontliners as well as ordinary workers who may lose their jobs during the COVID-19 crisis.
The bill proposes to augment the government’s P200-billion emergency budget with additional government funds and loans totaling P750 billion, specified in a program Marcos called Pag-ASA: Alaga, Sustento, Angat.
Marcos added that soldiers, policemen, immigration personnel, couriers and cargo handlers of crucial goods, and drivers of shuttle services for hospital staff should also be recognized as frontliners in the fight against COVID-19./Stacy Ang