For the fourth time, the proposal to create a department for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) made it to President Rodrigo Duterte's State of the Nation Address (SONA). Duterte on Monday, July 26, identified the creation of a Department of Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos (DMWOF) a priority bill in his final SONA. He made similar calls during his past SONAs, except in 2017 and 2018. "I also ask Congress to pass a law creating the Department of Migrant Workers and Overseas Filipinos. Kailangan po ito (this is needed) – because they are suffering, they suffered not only yesterday but they are still suffering now with so many inadequacies, in both our government response, including the monetary assistance – to ensure that there is a department that is solely focused on addressing the needs and taking care of the welfare of our countrymen abroad," Duterte said on Monday. It has been Duterte's plan to create a department focusing on OFWs even before he ... » Learn More about Does the Philippines need an OFW department?
Dekalb county police department open records
This question at the Philippine Business for Education's (PBEd) July 5 press conference was key. Since early 2021, PBEd has been beating the drums to warn against this learning crisis. A week later, the question gained greater prominence when the IATF reviewed the controversy that had erupted between Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Leonor Briones and the World Bank (WB) . DepEd Secretary Leonor Briones was the star of the IATF session, earning praise from President Duterte for extracting a public apology from the WB, which had released a report on the poor state of basic education in the country. But the summary conclusion of the meeting, which suggested that the president was not unduly worried about education, seemed to misunderstand Secretary Briones’ issues with the WB and the gravity of the problems facing the department. The case of Briones against the WB rested on three points. First, it released its study to the media without giving her prior ... » Learn More about [OPINION] Does the government believe there is a learning crisis?
Alternative nicotine delivery systems (ANDS), such as vapes and heated tobacco products (HTPs) are now steadily gaining recognition in the Philippines. MANILA, Philippines — Current strategies to get smokers to drop their habit — including going cold turkey, counseling, and nicotine replacement therapy — have not been very effective, according to Peter Paul Dator, president of The Vapers PH, as quoted in a joint statement issued on Tuesday by various groups advocating safer alternatives to cigarettes. About 15.9 million Filipino adults smoke, with a quit rate of only 4 percent, the statement said, citing the results of the Global Tobacco Survey of 2015, which was conducted by the Department of Health and the Philippine Statistics Authority. The low quit rate is the reason that various groups have continued to promote Tobacco Harm Reduction (THR), a strategy that encourages smokers who are unable or unwilling to quit to switch to smoke-free alternatives — also known as ... » Learn More about Filipinos warming up to better alternatives to cigarettes
The following is our exclusive weekly feature in which we ask our readers a news topical question and then give you a week to answer it on our various channels, compiling a diverse range of answers and opinions to present to you, our valued readers. Last week, we asked you the following: Reader Talkback: What do you think about Chonburi becoming a maximum control zone and getting tougher restrictions? Some context around the question: This week, we are going to choose the biggest topic on most people’s minds, Chonburi becoming a maximum control zone, or dark red, effective tomorrow, July 20th, 2021 until further notice. This announcement brings a number of tough new restrictions, measures, closures, and other rules. Officials claim the move will help prevent Covid-19 in the province as cases have steadily been rising for the most part regionally. The decision was, it is to be noted, made by the Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration, or CCSA, with the central ... » Learn More about Reader Talkback Results: What do you think about Chonburi becoming a maximum control zone and getting tougher restrictions?
WE all know that lockdowns are temporary measures to control the spread of Covid-19 within the community and lessen the healthcare burden. However, there are major concerns about how they can negatively affect people’s mental health. As a paediatrician, I receive numerous calls and visits by parents worried about their children’s health – especially those less than five years old. Most parents assume that the older age group would understand the pandemic better than the young ones and thus handle it better. I beg to differ. Here are some observed effects of lockdowns on children. > Developmental milestones – For school-going children, repeated school closures and strict movement control cause a significant reduction in having direct contact with their peers. Such measures also prevent children from participating in social activities like going to the playground or having playdates. This situation may make them feel lonely and anxious and some (especially young adults) ... » Learn More about How do lockdowns affect our children and what can we do to help them?
Last week, the Ateneo School of Government released its first working paper for “Duterte at 5,” a series that assesses different areas of governance including economic policy, legislative reforms, and crime and corruption. In that first report, we focused on social development reforms. While the report speaks for itself, we would like to use this space to reiterate some of our salient points especially on poverty and hunger. Social development is a pillar of Duterte’s administration. The reduction of social inequality is clearly enshrined in the Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022 . And in its Kasama sa Pamana pre-SONA report, rolled out in different regions in the first half of 2021, the administration applauds its accomplishments in combating hunger and ensuring food accessibility. So, are Filipinos indeed faring better now? Poverty To be sure, poverty incidence in the past two decades has been steadily declining. During the ... » Learn More about [ANALYSIS] Poverty, hunger, and Duterte’s wasted political capital
TOKYO: China's Hou Zhihui took the first weightlifting gold of Tokyo 2020 on Saturday (Jul 24) as she dashed India's hopes of an elusive first women's Olympic title. The 24-year-old world championship silver medallist Hou dominated the 49kg competition, opening up a 7kg advantage over India's Chanu Saikhom Mirabai after the opening three lifts. Hou's 94kg third attempt was below her own snatch world record, but it gave her a healthy cushion over Mirabai, who could only manage 87kg, failing with her final attempt at 89kg. Mirabai, the 2017 world champion at 48kg, is the world record holder in the clean and jerk at 119kg, but could only manage 115kg and finished 8kg behind Hou's aggregate of 210kg. Mirabai did become the second athlete from India to claim an Olympic weightlifting medal, after Karanam Malleswari's bronze in the women's 69kg at Sydney 2000. But she could not become the second athlete - and first female - from the country to win individual Olympic gold, ... » Learn More about China’s Hou Zhihui wins first weightlifting gold of Tokyo 2020
Resident Jon Cappleman prepares to defend his home during the Dixie fire in Twain, California on July 24, 2021. AFP TWAIN, United States — Even as dense smoke from an enormous wildfire blows closer to Jon Cappleman’s home in rural northern California, the 60-something man rebuffs calls to evacuate. “A lot of people think we’re foolish,” he says. But if it comes down to it, Cappleman has a plan: he will fight the flames of the Dixie Fire himself. Cappleman and his wife, whose home lies nestled in a pine forest near the town of Twain, hope they have thought of everything, down to the minute details. For several days, they have used a pump and blue pipes to siphon water from a nearby creek in an effort to keep the ground around their house damp. And Cappleman and his wife have spent all year keeping the surrounding area clear of flammable brush. Their goats take care of the spots they have missed. ‘Nerve-wracking’ “It’s a simple operation, but it works,” Cappleman, ... » Learn More about Refusing evacuation, California resident plans to fight fire himself
TOKYO (Reuters) - Tears were shed and dreams came true for Britain's 4x200m freestyle relay team as they celebrated an historic first at the Tokyo Olympics on Wednesday and their country's best performance in the pool in more than a century. Tom Dean collected his second gold medal of the Games, after winning the individual 200m on Tuesday, while a tearful James Guy joined Matthew Richards and Duncan Scott in collecting a first. Calum Jarvis also swum in the heats. Guy and Scott were silver medallists in Rio de Janeiro in 2016 to a U.S. team that included Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte but they started as favourites on Wednesday and lived up to expectations. "In 2016 we came second but that was a monster achievement at the time," said Scott, who swam the anchor leg to touch out in six minutes, 58.58 seconds. That was 0.03 off the world record set by the United States in 2009, a different era, and 0.02 slower than the Olympic record set by the Americans in Beijing in ... » Learn More about Olympics-Swimming-Tears and triumph as Britain hit a 113-year high
The President's next State of the Nation address is expected to be his last, barring an unconstitutional extension of his term, and he would naturally want his valedictory, a victory lap of his administration. At best, however, it would be a pyrrhic victory lap, for we, the nation, are not at our best. We are instead languishing: in the tides of history, in a flood of blood and tears. We languish in COVID, with the Philippines holding the ignoble record of the longest continuous lockdown. $15 million has been borrowed to tide the country over during the pandemic, but we've only seen infection numbers seesawing, business shuttering, families going hungry and losing loved ones, and the vaccination rollout still trying to gather steam. All this was derived from decisions made since February 2020, when, despite evidence that the Wuhan outbreak could become a pandemic, the Duterte administration dithered on controlling flights from the region. That other countries are also going ... » Learn More about [OPINION] The languishing state of the nation