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Monday, June 24, 2024

Most Filipinos support ‘active transport’ move

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The majority of the Filipinos polled in a survey believe that active transport is possible in their locality and should be given priority, according to a nationwide Social Weather Station survey. 

The survey comes amid a push by the Department of Health, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Public Works and Highways and the Department of the Interior and Local Government to promote active transport among the communities.

In a November 2020 SWS poll commissioned by Health department, 85 percent of those polled across all areas and socio-demographic groups believed that their city or municipality could become a great place for walking and cycling. Meanwhile, 87 percent also agreed that the roads would be better off if public transportation, bicycles and pedestrians were given priority over private vehicles.

“The results of this survey demonstrate public support for government efforts to promote active transport. Cycling and walking remain among the safest ways to maintain physical distancing during travel while promoting physical activities,” Health Secretary Francisco Duque III said. 

“These forms of physical activity improve the overall health of a person, boost their immune system and help fight diseases such as diabetes and heart disease,” Duque said.

Meanwhile, Transportation Assistant Secretary Mark Steven Pastor said the DOTr was committed to work on policies, projects and programs to institute appropriate infrastructure for active transport users. 

“As we start off with increasing the accessibility of activity areas and fundamental facilities through the bike lane networks in the metropolitan areas of Manila, Cebu, and Davao, feasibility studies will also get underway to establish bike lane networks in all cities in the country,” he said.

“A healthy locality promotes and supports the physical activities of its citizens. We encourage local government units to put in policies and mechanisms in place that will make their localities walkable, bikeable and breathable,” Duque said.

The Health department last year released a Health Promotion Playbook on Active Transport that provides a comprehensive guide for LGUs who wish to roll out their own bicycle lanes. For assistance, LGUs may email healthysettings.doh@gmail.com

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