NCR mayors agree: Community pantry organizers should coordinate with LGUs | Inquirer News

NCR mayors agree: Community pantry organizers should coordinate with LGUs

/ 04:13 PM April 25, 2021
CHR: Profiling community pantry organizers an 'abuse of police power'

People line up to get free food supplies at the Maginhawa community pantry in Teacher’s Village, Quezon City, on Saturday, April 17, 2021, after the project went viral this week as more people donate food stock on a small shelf where underprivileged people can access it but are told to only get what they need. INQUIRER PHOTO / NIÑO JESUS ORBETA

MANILA, Philippines — The Metro Manila Council (MMC) has issued a resolution “strongly urging” community pantry organizers to coordinate their activities with local government units (LGUs), to ensure that health protocols preventing the spread of  COVID-19 are enforced and observed.

The resolution, copies of which were shared by the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) on Sunday, said coordination is meant to ensure that gains recorded during the recent imposition of strict quarantine measures are sustained.

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The MMC which is composed of all the mayors of Metro Manila is the policy-making body of the MMDA.

Metro Manila and nearby provinces were placed under an enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in late March, and currently under a modified ECQ (MECQ) due to a surge in COVID-19 cases attributed to the spread of new variants of concern.

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“Whereas, the sacrifices endured and the gains accumulated during the ECQ and MECQ must not be put to waste by a disregard of the prohibition against mass gatherings, observance of social distancing, and the wearing of face masks and face shields,” the Metro Manila mayos said in the MMDA Resolution No.21-08 Series of 2021 showed.

“Now, therefore, be it resolved, as it is hereby resolved by the Metro Manila Council, through the 17 Local Chief Executives in the National Capital Region, that the organizers of the community pantries are strongly urged to have prior coordination of their activities with the concerned Metro Manila [LGUs] in order to ensure the proper observance of COVID-19 protocols,” they added.

All 17 Metro Manila mayors and MMDA Chairperson Benhur Abalos, signed the document.

The resolution was released by the MMDA and the MMC a day after the Department of Interior and Local Government asked community pantry organizers to coordinate with the LGUs and the local Philippine National Police (PNP) for crowd control and enforcement of health protocols.

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READ: DILG to community pantry organizers: Coordinate with LGUs, PNP for crowd control

The Quezon City government also issued an ordinance on Saturday mandating that community pantries in the city have a written notice and identify a point person.

READ: Written notice, point person now required in setting up community pantries in QC

The requirements also came in the wake of the community pantry set-up by actress Angel Locsin in Quezon City, which was swarmed by people seeking aid.

An old man who lined up at the crowded community pantry collapsed and later died.

READ: Death at crowded pantry: Officials stress coordination with local gov’t

READ: Death, huge crowd shut down Angel Locsin’s birthday community pantry

Locsin organized the community pantry to celebrate her 36th birthday.  The actress has already apologized for the incident, assuring the public that she would look after the man who died.

READ: Angel Locsin says sorry after senior lining up at her pantry collapses, dies

Community pantries sprouted across Metro Manila, and even in the provinces, as Filipinos flocked to them to get needed food and other items.

READ: ‘Giving and taking in time of crisis:’ Community pantries sprout in NCR

However, community pantries also turned controversial after several pantry organizers were profiled and red-tagged. Issues about the regulation of community pantries also arose in view of health safety and security concerns.

READ: Permit needed for community pantries to ensure safety, security — DILG exec

READ: No permit needed for community pantries to operate — ARTA

READ: CHR: Profiling community pantry organizers an ‘abuse of police power’

For more news about the novel coronavirus click here.
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TAGS: 2019 Novel Coronavirus, 2019-nCoV, Angel Locsin, community pantry, COVID-19, COVID-19 pandemic, COVID-19 surge, health protocols, lockdown, MECQ, Metro Manila, Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA), MMC, modified enhanced community quarantine, nCoV update, Philippine news updates, physical distancing
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