The global pandemic is forcing unions across all countries to demand more extreme measures in terms of health and safety at work, especially when there is an absence of company and government social and civil responsibility. In this context, and in response to different labour demands, the Health Union Coordination of Peru has joined forces, proposing necessary actions in the field of bio security for workers in the sector.
The Coordination, jointly with UNI, urged the government and the Ministry of Health to urgently adopt a number of priority policies at the national level to protect both patients and workers. One of the policies is the immediate implementation of a citizen response system for people who feel they may have been infected with the COVID-19, as there are reports that hotline 113 is overloaded with calls and therefore people are showing up at emergency rooms, something that must be avoided due to the high spread of the virus. Also, the Coordination urged to have isolated care units for confirmed cases, and differentiated triage for people with a suspected case of coronavirus COVID-19.
Finally, guarantees for workers were requested in all health facilities throughout Peru during the health emergency:
1. Access to permanent personal protection equipment and bio safety material suitable for all hospital areas.
2. Employers to provide private transportation for workers to commute to work and back.
3. Employers to provide food at work, and at home if necessary.
4. All workers in vulnerable conditions to have paid leave during the health emergency.
Yesterday, the unions of the social security system were scheduled to hold a press conference about this situation and other problems with the government’s covid response at the doctors unions head quarters, but the police entered before the conference and arrested the Secretary General of SINAMSSOP, the nurses union which is affiliated to UNI. Wilfredo Ponce, the Secretary General of our largest affiliate on the sector, Fed-Cut, arrived to participate after the police were already inside and they would not let him in. Marcio Monzane, Regional Secretary said: “As the world fights the virus, Martin Vizcarra fights those working to support and improve labour and health conditions to fight the epidemic”.
“The president of Peru needs to protect the health workers with adequate personal protection and not supress those who speak out about the situation”, he concluded.
UNI and the Coordination believe that the proper functioning of the health system in Peru will be of fundamental importance in the months ahead, and can only continue to operate if its workers have these minimum guarantees and remain healthy.
As the world fights the virus, @MartinVizcarraC Fight those who try to support, say what is going well and what is missing, to lessen the epidemic. An absurd Our solidarity to SINAMSSOP. We call for freedom of opinion and the freedom of Teodoro Sánchez!