The government will accommodate medical frontliners who have been forced out from their rented homes or apartments amid the fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), President Rodrigo Roa Duterte said on Monday.
There have been reports over the past months of health workers being evicted from their dwelling places by their landlords because of their profession or upon learning that they contracted COVID-19.
In his public address, President Duterte said the government would build a mechanism to help medical frontliners.
“I would like to make this announcement. Kayong lahat na mga health workers na pinapaalis sa mga inyong tinitirahan — sa mga bahay, whether you’re renting a room or a house pero dahil nga nasa frontliner ka sa COVID, pinapaalis kayo because of the fear unfounded na mahawa ninyo ang may-ari ng mga bahay at ‘yung mga kasamahan ninyo sa mga dormitory,” President Duterte said.
“If this happens, you can call directly the office of Secretary Galvez and we will provide you with the necessary billeting and pati pagkain na, and we will choose a place nearest to where you are working,” he added.
The President said it’s the government’s responsibility to help those at the frontlines in the fight against COVID-19, noting the government could shelter them in vacant hotels.
He also appealed to the landlords not to evict medical frontliners.
“We are trying to make up for the deficiencies. And luckily, the Philippines has able to at least meet halfway of what was the expectations of the people. Iyan sana. Maawa naman ako sa mga tao na tumutulong tapos pinapaalis. Hindi ho maganda pakinggan,” said the President.
According to the Department of Health (DOH), the Philippines has now 220, 819 cases, with 59,697 active cases; 157,559 recoveries; and 3,563 deaths. PND