Robredo seeks safety nets for informal sector workers
MANILA, Philippines — Vice President Leni Robredo on Sunday said the government must ensure that there were social safety nets for vulnerable workers who would be adversely affected by the proposed curfew in the different cities in Metro Manila.
Robredo said the community quarantine for the National Capital Region (NCR) would have a large impact on members of the informal economy, such as pedicab drivers and small vendors, whose livelihood rely on working during late hours.
Protect the poor
“With the declaration of a curfew, we should also have a plan for them,” she said in her weekly radio show. “If we won’t allow them to work, we should lay down our plans on how to help them so that they will have something to eat.”
Robredo also noted the lack of discussion on the safety nets for the poor, particularly when the guidelines on the community quarantine was released last week.
“We have to focus on how we can ensure that the poor are also protected from the virus. They have the least means to protect themselves,” she said.
Last week, Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez said informal sector members, who were usually not registered to do business in the capital, should just sell outside the region in the meantime. Robredo, however, said this comment comes across as insensitive.
The monthlong community quarantine of Metro Manila began on Sunday, with more than 40,000 police and military personnel operating entry and exit points in and out of NCR.
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