The Association of Carriers and Equipment Lessors (ACEL) is helping “arm” Metro Manila frontliners in the fight against COVID-19. Last April 22, the Association donated 200 face shields and 16 hazardous materials (hazmat) suits, more commonly known as personal protective equipment (PPEs), to the Providence Hospital located on Quezon Avenue in West Triangle, Quezon City.
“These frontliners – particularly the doctors, nurses and other hospital personnel – are the real heroes in this fight, and they are also the ones who are most at risk from this deadly virus,” Juan Lorenzo Luis C. Banson, ACEL’s Corporate Social Responsibility Committee chairman, said in a statement which was supported by the rest of the Board of Directors. “Providing them with protective gear is the least we can do for these brave healthcare workers.”
ACEL will continue to extend support to these frontliners, he added, noting that the face shields and PPEs turned over to the Providence Hospital were just the first wave of donations that the Association is organizing.
ACEL’s involvement in the campaign to contain the spread of the coronavirus began even before Metro Manila was put under lockdown. On March 9, 2020, a week before the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) took effect, ACEL was one of the industry associations invited to a high-level consultative meeting that the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) convened.
In this meeting, DOLE officials, led by Sec. Silvestre Bello III, discussed the programs the department would undertake to keep companies operating and their employees earning even during the COVID-19 crisis. These included the COVID-19 Adjustment Measures Program (CAMP) as well as various flexible work arrangements (FWAs) that companies could put in place.
Juan Lorenzo Luis C. Banson, ACEL director and chairman of the Committee on Corporate Social Responsibility and Committee on Safety and Disaster, and Laurice Ambrosio, ACEL executive officer, attended the meeting.
Toward this end, ACEL is accepting donations from its members. Parties willing to donate can contact Laurice Ambrosio. The Association is also working on another project for its members once the industry is allowed to return to work.
The ACEL leadership acknowledged, however, that distributing PPEs to hospitals in Metro Manila has become a bit harder with the stricter implementation of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) which has just recently been extended to May 15. “Nevertheless, we will continue to find ways to reach out to the hospital frontliners in the Metro,” Eduardo Trinidad, Association president, said. “ACEL will continue to contribute to the efforts to put a stop to this contagion. Together, we will continue to fight and, together, we will heal as one!”