Death of a stranded worker prompts gov’t to prioritize stranded individuals

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The entire country was rocked by the tragic news of stranded worker Michelle Silvertino, a single mother of four children, dying on a footbridge in Pasay City on June 5.

Silvertino, who worked as a housemaid in Antipolo, Rizal, reportedly stayed on a footbridge along EDSA in Pasay City for five days after walking from Cubao, Quezon City in the hope of catching a bus ride back to her family in Calabanga, Camarines Sur.

She was found unconscious by a concerned citizen on June 5 and was rushed to the Pasay General Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque, in an interview, shared how devastated President Rodrigo R. Duterte was upon hearing the news.

“Tunay na nahahabag ang ating Presidente diyan sa sinapit nitong si Michelle. Sinabi nga niya na wala talaga dapat na Pilipino na mamamatay sa ganiyang pamamaraan na nais lang umuwi pero wala talagang masakyang bus,” he said.

[The President truly feels sorry for what happened to Michelle. He said no Filipino should die that way. She only wanted to go home but there was no bus.]

Roque said the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the Department of Transportation (DOTr) have already been directed to assist locally stranded individuals (LSIs) amid the limited operations of public transport due to the Covid-19 health crisis.

The DSWD, on the other hand, has been directed to give food and temporary accommodation to LSIs.

LSIs seeking government assistance may contact the DSWD Crisis Intervention Unit at 8734-8635.

The Hatid Tulong program was earlier launched by the government to assist LSIs stranded in Metro Manila due to travel restrictions imposed during the quarantine period.

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