QC gov’t launches program to exchange waste for basic commodities

Aileen Cerrudo   •   March 2, 2021   •   413

The Quezon City Government has launched a plastic waste trading project for residents to exchange their plastic waste with basic commodities.

The program entitled “Trash to Cashback” is launched with the help of the city’s Environmental Protection and Waste Management Department and the Basic Environmental Systems and Technologies, Inc. (BEST).

Under the said program, residents will convert their plastic waste to environmental points that can be exchanged for basic commodities such as rice, eggs, bread, fruits, vegetables and other essentials such as toiletries.

The QC government has yet to provide further details but they announced that caravans and rolling stores will be deployed to various barangays in the city.

Those interested may visit https://www.facebook.com/bxtraphilippines. -AAC

QC gov’t assures safety of community pantry organizers amid red-tagging claims

Robie de Guzman   •   April 20, 2021

The local government of Quezon City on Tuesday assured that organizers and beneficiaries of community pantries in the city will remain safe amid allegations of red-tagging being conducted by government authorities.

In a statement, Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte expressed support for the initiative and vowed to protect its organizers.

“I would like to personally assure Ms. Ana Patricia Non and other like-minded individuals that the local government of Quezon City fully supports Community Pantries,” Belmonte said.

“Indeed, these initiatives highlight the bayanihan spirit inherent in our QCitizens. The city government will therefore ensure that the organizers and beneficiaries of Community Pantries remain safe and unimpeded,” she added.

Belmonte gave the assurance after Non, the person behind the Maginhawa community pantry, said they would temporarily pause their operations for the safety of their volunteers amid the alleged red-tagging.

Belmonte said she has reached out to Non and discussed her concerns about her safety and security.

“I have requested QCPD District Director Brigadier General Antonio Yarra to conduct an investigation regarding Ms. Non’s apprehensions and earlier experiences,” she said.

“I will likewise meet with Station 9 Commander Police LtCol, Imelda Reyes, under which jurisdiction Maginhawa falls, to further discuss Miss Non’s security concerns,” she added.

The mayor said the city’s Task Force Disiplina and barangay officials have provided assistance in maintaining peace and order in the Maginhanawa community pantry.

She, however, clarified that the teams are only there to “help remind the public about observing minimum health standards and to assist in controlling any crowds that may form.”

“Task Force Disiplina is instructed to do the same for any other community pantries in the city should barangay personnel need additional assistance,” she said.

“In these difficult times, let us allow kindness and selflessness to prevail,” she added.

QC gov’t suspends online booking for COVID vax

Marje Pelayo   •   April 19, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Quezon City government has suspended online booking of vaccination slots on the eZConsult application.

The procedure will remain suspended while the local government is still waiting for additional vaccines for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) from the Department of Health (DOH).

Meanwhile, assisted booking for the first dose of vaccines in barangays has been suspended as well.

The city government assured those who already received the first dose of the vaccine that they have been reserved for their second dose at the vaccination site where they have taken their first dose.

They are reminded, however, to strictly follow their assigned date of vaccination indicated in their respective Vaccination Card.

Residents are advised to always check the city’s official Facebook Page or coordinate with barangay officials for the next schedule of vaccination.

QC gov’t taps PH Red Cross, clinic to expand COVID-19 testing

Robie de Guzman   •   April 12, 2021

The Quezon City government has partnered with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) and a private diagnostics clinic in a bid to further increase the city’s mass testing and speed up the detection of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

In a statement, Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte said they have tapped the PRC and diagnostics clinic Hi-Precision to expand the city’s swab and X-ray testing amid the surge in COVID-19 cases.

“Our partnerships will allow us to pool all available resources, weave our efforts, and immediately address the needs of our most affected communities,” Belmonte said.

Under a memorandum of agreement, the PRC will allocate 8,000 RT-PCR test kits to the city worth around P3,400 each.

Belmonte said the partnership will allow the city government “to test more residents and subsequently reinforce its contact tracing efforts” and increase the turnaround time for the releasing of test results.

Under the partnership with Hi-Precision diagnostics clinic, the city government said the facility has offered to lend its two mobile X-ray units to the city.

The said units, which are worth P3.6 million, will be set up in two of the city’s HOPE facilities and cater to the admitted patients.

“The idea is to decongest our hospitals by putting these machines in our HOPE facilities so that our mild to moderate or asymptomatic patients can have their X-ray done at the soonest time possible,” Belmonte said.

The Quezon City government also said it is also planning to open three additional testing centers which will cater to individuals who are manifesting flu-like symptoms and those who have exposure to COVID-positive patients in the communities.

The existing community-based testing centers are in Toro Hill Basketball Court (District 1), Payatas Super Health Center (District 2), Old Balara Covered Court (District 3), Amoranto Stadium (District 4), SB Park Novaliches (District 5), and Talipapa Senior High School (District 6).

All centers operate Mondays to Saturdays, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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