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Hontiveros on World Day of the Poor: Listen to and act on the poor’s plight


November 14, 2021

Photo credits: The Philippine Star

Senator Risa Hontiveros on Sunday underscores the need to listen to and act on the plight of many Filipinos who are experiencing poverty due to the continued economic effects of the pandemic. “We must always heed the call of the poor. Sa panahon ng resesyon at pagkagutom, hindi natin dapat talikuran ang mga kababayan nating nangangailangan. We must listen to and act on their plight,” she said in lieu of the celebration of the fifth World Day of the Poor. Last year, Hontiveros filed Proposed Senate Resolution No. 550 urging the Senate and the public to support the observance of and celebration of the World Day of the Poor. Pope Francis led the observance of the first ‘World Day of the Poor’ in 2017 and has since been observed annually all over the world. Hontiveros reiterates her call to put forward legislation that will ultimately put forward the welfare of the marginalized and underserved sectors. As a legislator herself, her laws have been anchored on reducing social inequalities, bringing about human and people-centered legislation such as Universal Health Care Law, Anti-Hospital Deposit Law, Mandatory PhilHealth Coverage for all PWDs, Expanded Maternity Leave Law, 4Ps Act, among others.

“Ang araw na ito ay nagpapaalala sa atin na dapat manatiling bukas ang ating tenga, isip, puso at palad para sa mga maralita. At bilang pagtalima sa mensahe ng paggunita ngayong taon, patuloy tayong bumabalangkas at nagpapasa ng mga batas para umunlad ang kanilang buhay,” she said. Just recently, the Senator launched her advocacy campaign, ‘Healthy buhay at hanapbuhay’ which serves as a blueprint of her programs and policies addressing aspects that have negatively affected by the pandemic and pushing more people to poverty: health and jobs. Hontiveros, through the rollout of the Healthy Pinas Mobile Clinic, provides free medical services to indigent patients all over the country. Among the pro-poor legislation authored by Hontiveros are the Universal Social Pension Act, Free Dialysis for Senior Citizens Act of 2021, Balik-Trabahong Ligtas Bill,. Hontiveros expressed her commitment to relentlessly look after the needs of the poor and called on the public to do the same, even in their own, small ways. “Hindi ang isa’t isa ang ating kalaban, kundi ang kahirapan. Tayo ay dapat magkaisa na ito ay labanan. Tulungan nating iangat ang buhay, kalusugan at kabuhayan ng bawat isa. Enriching the lives of the poor enriches the whole nation,” Hontiveros concluded.

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