Translate alarms into local tongue

Actor turned senator Manuel “Lito” Lapid has pushed a bill mandating government agencies and local government units to translate all disaster or emergency announcements into any dialect to assist the public in being fully informed.

The senator underlined that most disaster or calamity announcements, advisories, or issues are only made available in English or Tagalog and that this compromises the government’s attempt to inform and prepare its citizens for imminent disasters.

“We have too many dialects but it is incumbent for the government to ensure that information is accessible to all,” Lapid said.

Accessible language urged

Senate Bill 275, also known as the Language Accessibility of Public Information on Disasters Act, will ensure that information about impending disasters or emergencies, such as epidemics, outbreaks, and public health emergencies, is language-accessible and easy to understand, especially for speakers of our regional languages and dialects.

Meanwhile, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council spokesperson Mark Cashean Timbal told the Daily Tribune that emergency alerts are also already available in different dialects.

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