Via InterAksyon.com: WHAT YOLANDA SURVIVORS WANT | Jobs and participation in rehab, reconstruction plan. Excerpt:
Begging and living on relief and aid forever are not options, thus said several associations of workers in the informal sector in Yolanda-hit Eastern Visayas on Monday, as they launched a campaign demanding employment, social protection, and people’s participation as bedrocks of the Yolanda rehabilitation and reconstruction plan to address not only the immediate but also the long-term needs of every affected Pepe and Pilar.
The campaign came days after the government announced the US$8.17-billion or P361-billion plan under the so-called Reconstruction Assistance on Yolanda (RAY) which will be completed in four years or by 2017, labor group Partido ng Manggagawa (PM) said in a news release.
Held in Tacloban City, the campaign launch was spearheaded by tricycle and trisikad drivers and operators (TODAs) in Tacloban, Hilongos, and Baybay, in coordination with PM.
After attending a twelve noon mass at the Sto. Nino Church, TODA members held a motorcade around Tacloban City with posters bearing the call, “Make jobs a priority in Yolanda rehab,” wrapped around their trikes. A gathering and small salo-salo followed the motorcade at the Church’s Social Hall where family members and other Yolanda survivors gathered to hear the groups’ manifesto and affirm their commitment to the collective struggle of rebuilding their lives and their communities.
In a joint Manifesto signed by the Tacloban Federation of MCF Drivers and Operators (TAFEMDO), the Hilongos-based Trisikad Operators and Drivers Organization (TODO), and Partido ng Manggagawa-Region 8, the groups explained that prior to the onslaught of Yolanda (Haiyan), they already were living poor, miserable lives, transporting people around the city through motorized and non-motorized cabs for hire was their only source of income.
“Because income is irregular in this nature of work, we earn less than what we need. This condition likewise explains why many of us, together with other poor people, live in urban poor communities where we face recurrent and extreme vulnerabilities from both man-made and natural calamities. In other words, we are poor, defenseless, and were unprepared to face the strongest typhoon in history,” read the manifesto.