Inclusion of bgy workers in vax priority group lauded

June 9, 2021 Ryan Ponce Pacpaco 359 views

AKO Bisaya party-list Rep. Sonny Lagon and Deputy Speaker and Manila Rep. Bienvenido “Benny” Abante have lauded the Duterte administration on the inclusion of barangay workers in A4 vaccination priority group.

Lagon, a friend and ally of Lakas-Christian Muslim Democrats (CMD) led by House Majority Leader and Leyte 1st District Rep. Martin G. Romualdez as president, said the inclusion is very timely being frontliners in the fight against coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) pandemic.

“This is a good expression of appreciation to our barangay workers’ who have been always there in battling the spread of COVID-19,” Lagon said.

Lagon underscored the importance for barangay workers to be given protection from the pandemic by ensuring an immediate, safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine for them.

“Barangay workers are unsung heroes in this very difficult time of COVID-19. Vaccinating them means a good appreciation of their amazing performance in keeping away our communities from pandemic’s further harm and devastation,” Lagon stressed.

Abante said “there is no better way to thank our barangay frontliners than by providing them with the protection they need to safely continue selflessly serving our communities.”

Based on June 7, 2021 letter from National Task Force against COVID-19 Chief Implementer Sec. Carlito Galvez, he informed Abante that the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) had granted his request to include barangay kagawads, tanods, and Sangguniang Kabataan officials in the A4 vaccination priority group.

In the said letter, Galvez informed Abante that per IATF Resolution No. 117 s. of 2021, the Manila solon’s request for the inclusion of the barangay workers “has already been favorably acted upon and granted.”

“As now reflected in the aforementioned IATF Resolution, employees in government agencies and instrumentalities, including government-owned and controlled corporations and local government units are included under Priority Group A4,” said the Vaccine Czar.

Abante on May 25 had written Galvez, through Cabinet Secretary and IATF Co-Chair Karlo Nograles, and urged the IATF to treat barangay personnel as frontliners in the barangay as they “help and assist local health officers in tracking and monitoring COVID patients, deliver ayuda house to house, assist and facilitate hospitalization of COVID cases in the barangays when needed, and work at night to implement curfew as per IATG guidelines.”

The legislator said he was grateful to Galvez, Nograles, and the IATF for immediately acting on his request––and for sharing his sentiments that barangay officials, as essential workers and immediate responders, deserve to be included in the A4 Priority Group.

According to Abante, the IATF resolution “recognizes the contributions, the sacrifices, and the risks taken by barangay personnel who have been mobilized since day one of this pandemic to implement government directives intended to contain COVID-19.”

“This policy directive of the IATF is also timely as it coincides with the expected arrival of over 10 million doses this month. Ngayon makakahinga ng malalim ang ating mga taga-barangay dahil alam nila mabibigyan sila ng dagdag na proteksyon laban sa COVID virus.”