Teachers' group call for safe reopening of schools

The Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) in commemoration of National Heroes' Day called on the administration to "enable the safe re-opening of schools and delivery of accessible quality education to the youth—the heirs and future of our nation." 

(Photo courtesy of DepEd / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

ACT said in a statement that among the biggest crises faced today is the pandemic, noting it highlighted the weaknesses of the present institutions and furthered the systemic oppression and exploitation of the people. 

"Born of these are modern-day heroes who stand in the frontlines of the COVID-19 war, braving the dangers of the time to protect the welfare of and provide social services to the people," ACT said.

ACT praised the modern heroes such as health workers, essential service workers, public transport drivers, educators and staff, government employees, media workers, agricultural workers, and human rights workers. 

It said that the government should ensure the protection of frontline workers amid the "worsening health, economic, and human rights crises.  

The group said that Filipinos should be honored by means of health protection, safety nets, livelihoods, livable wages, financial aid, and access to vital social services. 

"The regime is demanded to employ a comprehensive and rights-based approach to resolving the predicament brought by the botched pandemic response and years of state abandonment," ACT said.

"As human rights defenders, we call for an end to the suppression of people's rights and freedoms as well as to the summary killings of our colleagues who have already suffered harassment and vilification from state forces. We further demand justice for slain peace and rights workers Ka Randy Echanis, Zara Alvarez, Carlito Badion, and many more," ACT said.