PBBM declares last working day of Nov. as ‘National Bike-to-Work Day’

By Ruth Abbey Gita-Carlos

November 30, 2023, 12:03 am

MANILA – President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. has declared the last working day of November as “National Bike-to-Work Day” to raise public awareness of the viability of cycling as a mode of transportation and promote active transport in the Philippines.

Proclamation 409, inked by Marcos on Nov. 28 and made public on Wednesday night, cites the need to make cycling a mainstream mode of transportation, and further improve cycling infrastructure in the Philippines.

“The post-pandemic ‘New Normal’ requires the adoption of measures to enable safe, independent, physically-distanced travel, especially for essential workers, so that the country is better prepared in the event of another health emergency,” the proclamation read.

“The Philippine Development Plan 2023-2028 underscores the need to develop active transport network, and accord highest priority to pedestrians and cyclists in the hierarchy of road users.”

Under Proclamation 409, the Inter-Agency Technical Working Group on Active Transport (IATWG-AT) of the Department of Health (DOH) is designated to lead, coordinate, and supervise the observance of “National Bike-to-Work Day.”

The IATWG-AT is also mandated to identify the programs, projects, and activities for the annual celebration, as well as coordinate with relevant non-government organizations and civil society groups.

All other national government agencies and instrumentalities, including government-owned or -controlled corporations, government financial institutions, and state universities and colleges, are directed to provide the necessary assistance and support to the DOH and the IATWG-AT for the effective implementation of the proclamation.

Local government units and the private sector are encouraged to support the yearly celebration of the “National Bike-to-Work Day.”

Republic Act (RA) 8749 or the Philippine Clean Air Act provides that the State must ensure a balance between development and environmental protection, and maintain a quality of air that protects human health and welfare.

RA 8749 also encourages non-motorized transportation.

The 1987 Constitution also declares it a policy of the State to protect and advance the right of the people to a balanced and healthful ecology in accord with the rhythm and harmony of nature. (PNA)