Salary increase and job security, not concerts—health workers

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Health workers expressed their dismay over Malacañang’s upcoming “Concert at the Palace for Our Healthcare Workers” on June 30, which is set to cost millions of pesos. For them, such activities and concerts are useless if the regime turns a deaf ear to the legitimate demands of health workers. According to the Alliance of Health Workers (AHW), the concert indicates that the Marcos regime does not take the health of the people and the condition of health workers seriously.

“What we need now is not a concert that will provide short-term solace. What health workers need is immediate salary increases, job security, mass hiring of regular health workers, provision of delayed benefits like Performance- Based Bonus (PBB) and Health Emergency Allowances (HEA) in private hospitals and those under local governments,” according to Cristy Donguines, a nurse and AHW general secretary.

The group asserts that amidst the challenges faced by health workers, especially during the pandemic, it is crucial for to receive the appropriate support and recognition for their sacrifices and service to the people. “This is by addressing long-standing issues and matters so as not to increase the number of health workers who are pushed overseas to work,” according to AHW.

Health workers have strongly expressed their anger at the government’s neglect and ineffectiveness during the pandemic. “We don’t want to be protrayed as heroes who are neglected and forgotten after the fight [during the pandemic],” Donguines added. AHW insisted that their long-standing calls should be addressed and resolved.

The scheduled concert is the fourth in the “Palace Concert” series launched by Malacañang. Apart from this, the Marcos regime also launched a number of concerts and decorative activities, including the “Bagong Pilipinas” rally in January 2024, which reportedly cost an estimated ₱16.4 million.

AB: Salary increase and job security, not concerts—health workers