In order to better understand the plight of their constituents, specifically the demographic riding public utility vehicles, a congressman files a bill requiring government officials to take public transportation every month.

House Bill 6195, also known as the ‘Public Servants Commuting via Public Transport Act’, authored by AANGAT TAYO Rep. Neil Abayon

The bill stipulates that elected and appointed public officials and civil servants in national and local government offices, from division chief to department secretary shall ride public utility vehicles (passenger buses, commuter trains, light rail, taxis, and transport network vehicle service, public utility jeepneys, and passenger tricycles) to and from work and for official business once every calendar month during weekday rush hours.

House bill requires gov’t officials to take public transportation once a month

“The personal, first-hand experience of riding public transportation will enable legislators to gain real world perspectives and inputs in aid of legislation,” said Abayon.

Also specified in the bill is the measure indicating that elected and appointed public officials, as well as civil servants regardless of rank must ride coach or economy class when taking flights during official trips.

The only exceptions to the bill are existing handicap or physical condition of the gov’t official as certified by a licensed physician, and security threats to President, Vice President, the Chief Justice and Justices of the Supreme Court

“Public service requires empathy and concerns for the people being served. Public service improves when it is rendered with empathy and compassion. Public service requires living modestly and does not mean entitlement to perks such as business class and first class accommodations with airlines. Aside from their use of official government vehicles according to established rules and regulations, public servants should maintain their empathy with and compassion for the people by riding public transportation on occasion,” said Abayon in his explanatory note.