Build gyms-cum-evacuation centers – Recto

The government is being encouraged to build covered gymnasiums which can be easily converted into evacuation centers in time of need. This was raised by Senate President Pro Tempore Ralph Recto who authored Senate Bill No. 805.

“It addresses the shortage of covered sports facilities in municipalities and the need for a disaster-resilient safe building people can seek shelter in during calamities,” Recto said in a statement.

Senate Bill No. 805 proposes the construction of a multi-use gym in every city and municipality.

“Disasters displace two kinds of people: those who are directly hit, and the children, who, though unscathed, have to temporarily give up their classrooms to evacuees,” Senator Recto said.

He is also urging government to step up its evacuation center-building program that began in 2016, when that year’s national budget authorized funding for 32 dormitory-type buildings in 16 regions.

He added that in conflict areas, the vacation of children whose schools are used to house refugees “is coterminous with the length of fighting.”

Recto said these structures are needed in the second most disaster-prone country in the world where mass evacuations happen all the time. “Kaya dapat given na itong mga gyms na ito. Bahagi ng ating disaster response infrastructure.”