No Respite For Frontline Workers In Nagaland As Discrimination Continues - Eastern Mirror
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No respite for frontline workers in Nagaland as discrimination continues

By Our Correspondent Updated: Aug 10, 2020 10:08 pm

Our Correspondent
Kohima, Aug. 9 (EMN): Despite repeated orders and reminders, frontline workers in Nagaland continue to face discrimination from the public. 

While many receive support from their family members, landlords and neighbours, not all of them undergo similar experiences.

Recounting her experience, one of the frontline workers who had come into contact with Covid-19 positive persons, shared that she underwent ‘mental stress’ due to the pressure from people around her.

When she informed her house owner that she was among the list of people under contact tracing and had to undergo home isolation, the owner panicked and asked her to stay at a paid quarantine facility.

However, paid quarantine facilities do not accept people unless they produce a copy of their Covid-19 results.

To add to her woes, even before the testing was done, her house owner, neighbours and the whole colony had already assumed that she was Covid-19 positive. In addition, the colony authorities asked for her test results.

“I was under so much pressure. I could not sleep or eat till my test result was out,” she shared.

“Such discrimination, rather than the virus, tends to make one feel sick,” she added.

The frontline worker shared that this is not the time to stigmatise and create issues, but fight together against the virus.

“To undergo testing of Covid-19 doesn’t mean the person is positive. People have to change this mindset. It’s time to create positivity instead of negativity. At times like this, if one person encourages us, we also get energised. We need a lot of support and encouragement from the people around us,” she said.

A healthcare worker at a private hospital in Kohima said that her house owner had suggested her to stay at the hospital she is working in, instead of commuting every day.

According to her, the landlord meant it in a ‘good way’ and was suggesting it for the safety of everyone, including her brother, with whom she shares the rented house.

‘But I also feel uncomfortable to continue to stay at the same time,’ she shared.

It was not the first time that her house owner had suggested the arrangement. During the first lockdown in March, she was asked to find an accommodation at the hospital.

But she stayed at home as the hospital did not provide accommodation back then, she shared.

When total lockdown was re-imposed in Kohima recently, she was asked again to stay at the hospital. This time, she chose to stay at the hospital, along with her colleagues.

It’s been over one week now that she is staying at the hospital.

The hospital is providing free accommodation and basic essential commodities to staff for emergency cases. Currently, cabins and wards meant for the patients are being used by some of the staff, she said.

“In a way, it’s also better to stay at the hospital as precautionary measure for my brother and neighbours at home. But one also doesn’t know when coronavirus is going to get over. A day may come when the hospital needs to be vacated for patients. Moreover, if other colleagues who are staying at the hospital decide to stay at home, then I cannot stay alone at the hospital and it’s a burden to others as well,” she shared.

For the convenience of everybody, she said that she is planning to vacate her current rented house and move to another location.

Another healthcare worker from the hospital said that some of the staff decided to stay at the hospital as a precautionary measure; some stayed because of the long distance, while some stayed because their colonies had been sealed.

As for her house owner, she said that they have been supportive so far.

By Our Correspondent Updated: Aug 10, 2020 10:08:18 pm
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