Marcos gov’t crafting ‘more expansive’ policy for journalists

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MANILA – Press Secretary-designate Trixie Cruz-Angeles on Wednesday stated that the incoming administration of Marcos is establishing a “more expansive” policy that will provide more protection and benefits to media workers in the country.

“We are always concerned about the safety of our journalists. We are crafting possibly a new policy on this one. Possibly, [we will] also make it a little more expansive,” Cruz-Angeles said during the Laging Handa briefing.

She made the remark, as she recognized the National Press Club’s (NPC) call for the incoming Marcos administration to continue supporting the operations of the Presidential Task Force on Media Security (PTFoMs).

According to Cruz-Angeles, the promotion of journalists’ welfare would be included in the expanded policy.

She said the updated policy would assist media practitioners cope with the Covid-19 pandemic.

“So, you know we are looking into welfare not just safety or protection because apparently the current policy is focused on attacks, physical attacks on our journalists. We would also like to look at expanding it to include the welfare of our journalists. Some of them have been hit very hard by the pandemic,” she said.

President Rodrigo Duterte created PTFoMs on Oct. 11, 2016 by virtue of Administrative Order 1 to secure and protect journalists from threats and violence.

On Tuesday, PTFoMS executive director Undersecretary Joel Sy Egco stated that the establishment of the media task force is a legacy of the Duterte administration because it has created a “safe environment” for Philippine journalists.

In its special resolution, the NPC said media workers have relied on PTFoMs as their direct line to the Office of the President for prompt action on their concerns.

It also persuaded President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. to take into account bolstering the PTFoMS by releasing an executive order transforming it into a presidential commission for media security that will “improve its ability to effectively address all issues pertaining to the country’s media industry”.

The NPC endorsed Egco, its former president, to chair the proposed institution.

House committees to hold hearings during break

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Spread the loveMANILA – The House of Representatives has authorized for its committees to conduct hearings during the five-week congressional break, extending until late April.