Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve heard a lot about global solidarity. Unfortunately, words by themselves will not end the pandemic – or curb the impact of the climate crisis. Now is the moment to show what solidarity means in practice. As G20 Finance Ministers meet in Venice, they face three crucial solidarity tests: on vaccines, on extending an economic lifeline to the developing world, and on climate. First, vaccines. A global vaccination gap threatens us all. While COVID-19 circulates among unvaccinated people, it continues to mutate into variants that could be more transmissible, more deadly, or both. We are in a race between vaccines and variants; if the variants win, the pandemic could kill millions more people and delay a global recovery for years. But while 70% of people in some developed countries are vaccinated, that figure stands at less than 1% for low-income countries. Solidarity means delivering on access to vaccines for everyone – fast. ... » Learn More about [OPINION] The G20 faces 3 big tests
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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?
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?
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?