Speaker Lord Allan Velasco’s Labor Day message

BOAC, Marinduque — One of the things that makes the Philippines truly unique is our workers. Tireless, dedicated and reliable; they are the backbone of our economy. These important traits of Filipino workers remain evident even in the midst of COVID-19 that has brought the country to a staggering halt.

This Labor Day, it’s not only fitting but absolutely important to recognize and celebrate the amazing efforts of all essential and frontline workers and thank them for risking their lives to fight the pandemic—caring for the sick, feeding our families and keeping communities running. In essence, we continue to survive and thrive through this public health crisis mainly because of them.

However, honoring the contributions and sacrifices of pandemic frontliners will require more than one day of recognition. This moment requires action. Since they are the ones risking it all, they deserve a greater role in charting our social and economic recovery. We need a broad socioeconomic transformation that takes into consideration their struggles and experiences during this pandemic. We should never forget our essential and frontline workers as we build back better from COVID-19.

In the meantime, we need to protect our frontliners. We support policies that will expand their health and life insurance; provide them all-important protective equipment and access to the life-saving COVID-19 vaccine; and guarantee their allowance, sick leave and hazard pay. These should serve as a token of our appreciation and gratitude for them for keeping the economy in motion and the rest of us healthy and safe.

Wishing everyone a happy and meaningful Labor Day!

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