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Legarda Urges Swift Enforcement of Bayanihan Act

April 6, 2020

Deputy Speaker and Antique Congresswoman Loren Legarda urged the government to swiftly enforce all provisions of the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act (Republic Act No. 11469), which was signed into law on March 24 to provide aid for affected families and bolster support for frontliners and personnel in arresting the spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country.

Legarda also supported the mobilization of P5,000 to P8,000 worth of cash and subsidy for 18 million low income households through the nationwide distribution system of the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD).

“Let us act faster than the spread of this disease. Further delays in our committed support could spell life or death to our people at the frontlines. Let us act with more urgency as required in a health crisis, while ensuring everyone’s safety and the judicious spending of our people’s budget,” Legarda said.

Legarda, author of the Republic Act No. 10361 or the Domestic Workers Act, said that the Bayanihan Act provides a special risk allowance on top of hazard pay, as well as shoulders all medical costs for those who were exposed to the virus. The law will also provide P100,000 to public and private health workers who contract the disease and P1 million to the families of health workers who died in line of duty.

Legarda said that the law has expedited the procurement of personal protective equipment (PPE), testing kits, and other medical supplies and tools; and the accreditation for COVID-19 testing by public and private medical institutions. It also authorizes local government units (LGUs) to use more than 5% of the amount allocated for their calamity fund.

The law also allows the discontinuation of programs, activities, or projects of the Executive Branch for the 2019 and 2020 national budget and to utilize the savings for the COVID-19 emergency.

Legarda also earlier filed House Bill No. 6620 on Emergency Food Subsidy that will provide assistance to poor and marginalized families in Metro Manila and affected provinces during this Enhanced Community Quarantine period.

“As we call on our government to do their best and most urgent to address this health crisis, let us all follow the health and safety measures during this quarantine period in order to prevent the spread of the disease. Let us be extra vigilant in safeguarding our health and of those around us,” Legarda concluded.#