Nationwide round-up (12/10/20)

Healthcare workers given until Friday to submit requirements for hazard pay

THE Department of Health (DoH) has extended the deadline for the submission of requirements for the hazard pay of healthcare workers to 5 p.m. Friday. In a statement on Thursday, the DoH Center for Health Development said the deadline was agreed upon during a dialogue with healthcare worker union leaders and the Hospital Industry Tripartite Council. Healthcare workers in Metro Manila have complained that some of them were given only one day to submit their requirements. “The DoH reminds implementing units, including hospitals and health facilities, to be more facilitative in the processing of these benefits,” the agency said. “While hospitals and other health facilities may request additional requirements and impose deadlines with a view to expediting the release of AHDP (active hazard duty pay) or SRA (special risk allowance), these impositions should not unduly burden our HCWs (healthcare workers),” it added. Administrative orders provide up to P3,000 monthly AHDP and up to P5,000 monthly SRA to coronavirus frontline workers. — Vann Marlo M. Villegas

Dialogue sought with top gov’t officials on political prisoners’ release

AS the world marked International Human Rights Day on Thursday, a group of political prisoners’ families called on the Philippine government to release about 657 political prisoners, 426 of whom were arrested under the administration of President Rodrigo R. Duterte. The group Kapatid said it is seeking a “direct dialogue“ with the country’s top officials to “open prison doors and release political prisoners.” Fides Lim, the group’s spokesperson, said in a statement, “To call for clear and genuine policies that will address the concerns of political prisoners and the other victims of the government’s human rights violations, we will converse with the country’s highest officials.” She said they are proposing that the dialogue include Vice President Maria Leonor G. Robredo, Executive Secretary Salvador C. Medialdea for the Office of the President, Justice Secretary Menardo I. Guevarra, Senate President Vicente C. Sotto, House Speaker Lord Allan Q. Velasco, Supreme Court Chief Justice Diosdado M. Peralta, and Commission on Human Rights Chair José Luis Martín C. Gascon. — Kyle Aristophere T. Atienza

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