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Reasonable accommodation at work due to COVID-19
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Q: My coworkers and I have had to work from home due to COVID-19. We are slowly returning to the office and I am concerned. I am an older worker with well-controlled diabetes and I have family members at home who are immuno-compromised. I don’t want to be infected and I certainly do not want…

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Selective service registration for naturalization
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Ang isang lalaking lawful permanent resident (LPR) o green card holder na nasa pagitan ng 18 hanggang 26 taon gulang ay kailangang magrehistro para sa Selective Service at magpakita ng ebidensiya ng pagrehistro para sa kanyang N-400 Application for Naturalization. Ayon sa USCIS Policy Manual, ang aplikante para sa naturalization ay kailangang magpakita na sa…

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Palace thanks UK, France, Germany for supporting PH arbitral win
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MANILA, Sept 19 (Mabuhay) — Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque on Friday extended gratitude to the United Kingdom, France, and Germany for supporting Manila’s win in the South China Sea by citing the 2016 Arbitral Award that invalidated Beijing’s expansive claims in the region.

“Nagpapasalamat po kami sa mga bansang ito dahil hindi naman po mabubura iyong panalo natin sa arbitral tribunal na iyan na nagsasabi na wala pong legal na basehan iyong kini-claim ng China (We thank these countries because there’s no erasing to what we won at the arbitral tribunal that there is no legal basis to China’s historical claims to maritime territories),” he said in a briefing.

The three European states in a note verbale on Thursday challenged China’s illegal claims in the strategic waters as they affirmed the 2016 decision of the Permanent Court of Arbitration.

France, Germany and the United Kingdom also underscored that land building activities or other forms of artificial transformation cannot change the classification of a feature under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

The Tribunal, basing its decision under UNCLOS, ruled that “none of the high-tide features in the Spratly Islands, in their natural condition, are capable of sustaining human habitation or economic life of their own.”

It said none of the high tide features in the Spratly Islands generate entitlements to an exclusive economic zone or continental shelf.

Roque said while China continues to reject the arbitral award, it remains binding on the signatories of UNCLOS, to which Beijing is part of.

“Hindi kinikilala iyan ng Tsina pero dahil siya po ay partido sa UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, binigay po niya ang kaniyang consent na i-settle ang lahat ng dispute sa pamamagitan ng dispute settlement procedure na nakasaad po sa UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (The ruling was not recognized by China but since they are party to the UNCLOS, they gave their consent to settle all maritime dispute through a dispute settlement procedure prescribed in the UNCLOS),” he said.

The three European nations’ diplomatic notes, dated September 16, came following the numerous communications issued by China in response to Malaysia’s submission to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf last year. (MNS)

ALSO READ: Duterte ready to work with Japan’s new PM Yoshihide Suga

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Filipino billionaires see their wealth fall during pandemic
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THE Philippines’ richest experienced a drop in their fortunes as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt the country’s economy. The collective wealth of the country’s 50 Richest dropped to $60.6 billion (P2.9 trillion) from $78 billion (P3.8 trillion) a year earlier, according to Forbes Asia. “Despite having one of the world’s strictest lockdowns, the Philippines…

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2M local workers, OFWs to get aid from Bayanihan 2 — Bello
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MANILA, Sept 19 (Mabuhay) — Close to 2 million Filipino workers including displaced overseas Filipino workers are set to benefit from the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act (Bayanihan 2), the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said on Friday.

“With this additional budgetary allocation, we expect to aid 700,000 formal sector workers. We also looking to provide assistance to some 1 million informal workers,” Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said in a Laging Handa briefing.

He added that some 200,000 overseas Filipino workers would also get cash aid as the government allocated PHP2 billion for the purpose.

Under the Bayanihan 2, the Department will be getting PHP13 billion to help workers cope with the effects of the pandemic.

The DOLE’s cash assistance programs include, the COVID-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP), Tulong Panghanapbuhay sa Ating Disadvantaged/Displaced Workers (TUPAD) and Abot Kamay ang Pagtulong (AKAP) program.

The CAMP provides a one-time cash subsidy of Php5,000.00 to formal sector workers affected by Covid-19.

Under TUPAD, beneficiaries were given the 10-day emergency employment and were paid the minimum wage prevailing in their respective areas.

Their job involved the disinfection and sanitation of the beneficiaries’ dwellings and immediate vicinity to conform with the physical distancing protocol to prevent the spread of the virus.

On the other hand, under the Abot Kamay ang Pagtulong (AKAP) program, OFWs will receive a one-time Php10,000 or $200 cash assistance.

Beneficiaries of the program are OFWs displaced by the pandemic who are abroad and stranded in the country. (MNS)

ALSO READ: DOLE awaiting PRRD nod on medical workers’ overseas deployment

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DOH reports 3,257 new Covid-19 cases, recoveries at 208,790
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MANILA, Sept 19 (Mabuhay) — The Department of Health (DOH) on Friday reported 3,257 new cases of the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19), bringing the country’s total to 279,526 since the pandemic began.

In its daily Covid-19 bulletin, the DOH said the new infections bring the country’s active Covid-19 cases to 65,906.

Of the new cases, it said the National Capital Region (NCR) had the most at 997, followed by Bulacan at 282, Cavite at 179, Negros Occidental at 152, and Cebu at 127.

Of the active cases, it said the majority exhibit mild symptoms or 87.5 percent, followed by asymptomatic at 8.8 percent, those in critical condition at 2.6 percent, and those with severe symptoms at 1.1 percent.

It also reported 733 new recoveries, bringing the country’s total to 208,790; with 47 new deaths to bring the total casualties against Covid-19 at 4,830.

About half of all beds reserved for Covid-19 cases nationwide are occupied, while 26 percent of the country’s 2,200 ventilators are in use.

To date, it said the country has 1,900 beds at intensive care units with 50 percent occupancy, 13,800 isolation beds at 45 percent occupancy, and 5,700 ward beds at 46 percent occupancy.

In NCR, beds are nearing critical levels at about 61.33 percent occupancy, while 38 percent of its 864 ventilators are in use.

In Region 7 (Central Visayas), roughly 31 percent of all beds for Covid-19 are occupied, while 27 percent of the region’s 171 ventilators are in use.

In Region 4A (Calabarzon), Covid-19 beds are also nearing critical levels at about 59 percent occupancy, while 22 percent of its 273 ventilators are in use.

Meanwhile, 25 more Filipinos abroad on Friday have tested positive for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), bringing the total tally to 10,385, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

The DFA also announced that total recoveries rose to 6,593 after 15 more patients recovered from the illness while the death toll remained at 777.

“The two previously reported recoveries in a country in the Middle East were removed from the list upon verification with Post,” the DFA said.

At present, there are 3,015 patients still undergoing treatment.

Based on data from the DFA, there are a total of 1,353 confirmed cases in the Asia and the Pacific region. Of this, 327 are patients undergoing treatment, 1,018 have recovered, and eight have died.

In the Middle East or Africa, there are 7,052 cases with 2,326 patients undergoing treatment. A total of 4,230 patients in the region have recovered and 496 have succumbed to the illness.

Europe has, meanwhile, reported 1,173 cases with 195 patients undergoing treatment. The region has reported 883 recoveries and 95 fatalities.

Meanwhile, a total of 807 cases were reported in the Americas. Of the number, 167 patients are still undergoing treatment while 462 have recovered and 178 have died. (MNS)

ALSO READ: P2.5-B budget for COVID-19 vaccine only an initial outlay — Roque

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P2.5-B budget for COVID-19 vaccine only an initial outlay — Roque
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MANILA, Sept 19 (Mabuhay) — The “meager” P2.5-billion budget for the procurement of COVID-19 vaccine is just an initial allocation, and the government is doing and looking for other ways to secure the medicine for Filipinos, presidential spokesman Harry Roque said Saturday.

Roque clarified the Department of Health’s concern that the allocation is inadequate.  “Well, panimula lang po yan dahil ang pribadong sector, yung mga may kaya mag-aangkat at kakayanin nilang magbayad.”

He pointed out that what is important is we know already how to procure the vaccine with the help of government financial institutions, such as the Land Bank and the Development Bank of the Philippines.

But in terms of reservations, he admitted that the government is negotiating with manufacturers.

“Pagdating sa reservations, nakikiusap tayo sa manufacturers para magkaroon tayo ng alokasyon, kasi ang bibilhin naman natin ay 40 million doses for 20 million poorest of the poor.”

This is one of the steps that the government is doing, that is why the President is looking at China and Russia for better procurement terms, he said.

“Unlike Western manufacturers, which demand an advance payment for the reservation, the two countries do not.”

Moreover, he said that another way to secure reservations is the government’s move to allow manufacturers to conduct clinical trials in the country for the vaccines they are producing.

“Pumapayag tayo na dito sa Pilipinas gagawin ang ilang clinical trials nang sa ganun, dahil meron tayong contribution sa pag-develop ng vaccine mauna rin tayo makakuha,” Roque said. (MNS)

ALSO READ: Palace says worst of Covid-19 is over

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