Mareng Cynthia’s fall-A A +A
By Nef Luczon
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
THIS is why PR persons or communication strategists are highly needed and must do their job to protect their high-valued clients’ images in order not to mess up in public, especially in making commentaries on particular issues or, in the recent case of Senatorial candidate Cynthia Villar, on different sectors of the society like the nurses.
She was quoted during the senatorial debate on GMA News TV's "Pagsubok ng mga Kandidato," where the host, Prof. Winnie Monsod, asked her to comment on the issue of the Commission on Higher Education and technical nursing committee’s plans to close nursing schools because of inferior quality of teaching.
On this case, Cynthia was reported to have taken the side of the school owners who don’t want any closures to happen.
As the conversation continued, she was quoted as saying “Pero 'yung amin po, 'yung sinasabi po namin sa kanila na actually hindi naman kailangan ang nurse ay matapos ng BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) kasi itong ating mga nurses ay gusto lang nila maging room nurse, o sa Amerika o sa other countries, ay mag-aalaga lang sila. Hindi naman kailangan na ganoon sila kagaling.”
The way she have said it caused an outrage by Filipino nurses all throughout the world. For them, it is like saying that passing a board exam and doing the best practices do not necessarily mean they would want to land a job in nursing. After all, nurses are already contented to being “room nurses” or care takers of people, especially the old ones.
Days after the news broke out, she issued an apology. I may not be a nurse but that apology, whether the statement was made by her throng of PR apologists, can be well accepted. But my vote and other people’s vote? That’s disturbing.
In recent data by the Professional Regulations Commission (PRC), there are about three million Filipinos who took the nursing course in the past 10 years, and about 400,000 passed the licensure examination.
Imagine that number of votes will be lost during the elections this May 13, and imagine how many families and relatives each of these nurses have? It can be a big blow to her political career, a big cut in her family’s money (but I doubt).
I have a brother who is a nurse, he works then in Saudi Arabia and now in an almost government-less, post revolution Libya. He tells my parents everything is okay, despite the 24/7 risk that of any possible commotion that would happen, and sometimes because of it, he and his colleagues could not sleep well because they are alert to whatever things that might happen.
There are more stories similar to my brother, trying to dismiss the loneliness they feel overseas, and the risks they should take in the name of survival.
If she can say things about nurses, how much to journalists and the media? The couple might have thought that all people in the media industry are all but PAID PR and PUBLICITY beggars.
Save your money Villar Family, focus on the foundation you built, if it's really meant for helping, and make your housing business also affordable like it's a China-made counterfeit branded phones.
(Nef Luczon is a freelance journalist and a part-time communications faculty and trainer. He is also a film and art enthusiast. Read his blog at Nefoi.blogspot.com and send comments to email@example.com)
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on March 06, 2013.