MMDA honors wounded workers
They often come within inches of passing vehicles as they tend to the plants or wield a broom. But on some unlucky days, they end up down on the curb, hurting and bleeding.
The Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) drew attention to the largely unheralded services rendered by its army of street cleaners, with a ceremony on Monday honoring those who had been injured or stricken with disease in the line of duty.
MMDA Chair Francis Tolentino conferred the “Marangal” (Noble) badge to 35 employees of the agency’s Metro Parkway Clearing Group (MPCG) who have been injured while at work from January 2011 to March 2013. Some of them were still on crutches when they accepted their badges.
Of the 35 awardees, 22 were sideswiped by cars, eight were hit by motorcycles, while one was hit by a jeepney. In most cases, the concerned motorists stopped to help their victims, and only a few were charged by the MMDA.
Two of the awardees were injured while clearing uprooted trees, while one contracted leptospirosis while collecting garbage, the MMDA said in a statement.
The list grew on Wednesday when another MPCG employee, Felipe Bernardo, was hit by a dump truck while he was watering plants on New York Street in Cubao, Quezon City.
“In the face of injury and death, these workers did their duty wholeheartedly and with selfless dedication,” Tolentino said.
“We can never replace employees who put their heart in their work, who are ready to sacrifice their lives and safety for the agency,” he added.
The Marangal badge is part of the MMDA merit system in which employees who earn three types of badges receive a P50,000 cash award.
The other two badges are “Matapat” (Honest) for those who return lost items, and “Disiplinado” (Disciplined) for those who perform with utmost courtesy.
MMDA street sweepers on the regular payroll earn about P11,800 a month.