Sun, May 11, 2003 - Page 2 News List

President honors nation's mothers and caregivers

MOTHER'S DAY The president asked that all nurses and mothers now fighting against SARS be appreciated and helped by everybody in Taiwan

By Lin Chieh-yu  /  STAFF REPORTER

President Chen Shui-bian gives the thumbs-up sign as he inspects a freshly caught bluefin tuna at a bluefin tuna cultural and tourism event in Tungkang in Pingtung County yesterday.

PHOTO: CNA

On the eve of Mother's Day, President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) yesterday expressed gratitude to all females, especially those who are mothers and nurses now fighting SARS, and encouraged them to protect their health at all costs.

"In this extraordinary time, let us remind and encourage each other to take care of ourselves and other people around us, so that mothers do not have to worry," Chen said.

"Let's not increase the burden on the nurses because of oversight on our part. This should be our most basic gift to mothers and nurses this year," Chen said.

"I hope we can see mothers and nurses smiling, without any anxiety or stress, as soon as possible," Chen said.

Chen thanked Taiwan's mothers and nurses in his weekly television speech.

Chen also attended the Black Tuna Cultural and Tourism Season event at Tungkang in Pingtung County yesterday. Chen called for maturity and rationality in dealing with the SARS outbreak, and gave his assurance that the government will review every aspect of its operations and make improvements where necessary. He said he hoped the people of Taiwan would care for and respect health-care workers fighting on the front lines, as well as people under quarantine.

Meanwhile, Vice President Annette Lu said SARS is an asymmetrical war against an invisible enemy. In view of the panic that accompanies the spread of SARS, the way to tackle the psychological impact on society and industrial structure is an important issue, Lu said. Lu made the remarks at an annual technology symposium in Taipei.

The Presidential Office's consultant committee on technology, which is chaired by Lu, held its second symposium at the National Defense Medical Center yesterday. Lu stressed in her speech that, while the government is busy with epidemic prevention work, all people should think about the impact of SARS on society.

"SARS is not the only disease disturbing humanity now. There is an Ebola outbreak in Africa and avian flu in some parts of Europe. This shows that despite today's technology and civilization there are still various diseases opposing humanity," Lu said.

"Humanity therefore cannot be arrogant. We should understand that human beings are a part of the world, not its master," she added.

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