Schools, NGOs told to assist distressed students
April 26, 2020
The city legislative body approved a resolution urging all public and private schools, academic institutions, and non-government organizations (NGOs) involved in mental health, to make known the online or virtual services they can provide to assist distressed students and other individuals through online platforms via social media vlogs and blogs, text messages or quad-media in the city.
The resolution authored by all members of the city legislative body states that the provision of online or virtual services for counselling or psychological assessment is not yet well-known with the current situation, yet, there is a need to inform and disseminate the foresaid type of services to cater to distressed students, among other individuals, who need such assistance from experts of the said field.
The resolution admits there are some students and individuals who are now experiencing depression, distress, anxiety and uncertainty, direct and indirect, caused by the current situation where Luzon is now under enhanced community quarantine.
Further, the resolution notes that the suspension of classes in all levels forced all students, including teachers, school administrators, and other personnel, to remain stationary and isolated in their respective dormitories, student residences, and boarding houses, located in the different parts of the city.
According to the resolution, some students were not able to go back to their homes before the implementation of the Luzonwide enhanced community quarantine, thus, stranded.
City legislators underscored that the State has its normal obligation to promote mental health pursuant to the provisions of Republic Act (RA) 11036 or the law that mandated the establishment of a National Mental Health policy for the purpose of enhancing the delivery of integrated mental health services, promoting and protecting the right of persons utilizing psychiatric, neurologic and psycho-social health services, appropriating funds therefore and for other purposes.
Section, Article 2 of the Philippine Constitution provides that the State affirms the basic right of all Filipinos to mental health as well as the fundamental right of people to require mental services.
Experts cited that the dreaded Corona Virus Disease (COVID) 2019 outbreak has the potential to allegedly increase stress and anxiety, both because of the fear of catching the virus and of uncertainty about how the outbreak will affect people, socially and economically.
Earlier, Dr. Violeta Bautista, a clinical psychology professor and private practitioner, said that collective stress and anxiety are normal reactions to an abnormal situation and that the battle against the COVID-19 is a highly unusual circumstance with the capacity to challenge and destabilize anyone.
The resolution stipulates that it was brought to the city legislative body the matter regarding an incident whereby a 20-year old female student from Aurora Hill attempted to commit suicide amidst the CORVID-19 situation prevailing in the country today and that another incident was also reported where a 65-year old male committed suicide at Pucsusan barangay due to his anxiety of being under isolation and self-quarantine. – By Dexter A. See
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