NTF tells public to still bring face shields when going out amid requirement of establishments

Job Manahan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 20 2021 12:43 PM

Commuters try to catch a ride at a bus stop along EDSA in Quezon City on August 4, 2021. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News
Commuters try to catch a ride at a bus stop along EDSA in Quezon City on August 4, 2021. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

MANILA - An official of the government's task force against COVID-19 on Saturday called on the public to be "conscious" when going out and to still bring face shields as some establishments require it amid the looser quarantine.

National Task Force Against COVID-19 Spokesperson Restituto Padilla said the policy should not be taken against the government or the private sector, as this provides additional protection. 

This follows government's decision to relax the face shield requirement, making it voluntary in areas under looser quarantine levels.

"Ito naman po ay bunga ng pagiging conscious natin, bilang proteksyon sa lahat. Huwag niyo pong imasama na tayo ay patuloy na nagpapagamit ng face shield," Padilla said in a public briefing.

(We are being conscious to ensure everybody's protection. I hope you won't take it against us if we continue to tell you to use face shields.)

"Kaya ang amin pong abiso, dalhin niyo lang po ang face shield niyo, kung sakali ipapagamit, eh di isuot niyo. Kung hindi naman, at nandoon kayo sa maayos na lugar, puwede niyo nang hawakan na lang o ilagay sa lalagyan," he added. 

(Our advise would be to continue bringing face shield just in case the establishments would require it. If they will require it, then wear it. If not, then just put it in a container.)

The development came after acting Palace Spokesperson Karlos Nograles on Friday said private establishments and workplaces could require their customers and workers to wear face shields.

This, even if President Rodrigo Duterte lifted the face shield rule for areas under Alert Level 3 below. 

But such requirement was not made to make it hard for anyone, Padilla said.

"Kung ang [stall] owners ay nag-require ng face shield, 'yan naman po ay para sa kapakanan at kabutihan ng lahat. Hindi po ito nagbibigay ng kundisyon para pahirapan tayo, pero para maprotektahan tayo. Kaya sana po ay huwag niyo masamain," the official noted. 

(If stall owners would require a face shield, then that's for everybody's sake. This condition was not made to make it hard for us but rather, it is meant to protect us. I hope you won't take it against us.)

Authorities and experts had said face shields help in reducing the risk of COVID-19 transmission, but an engineer specializing in wind dynamics called this "redundant" with masks already being used. 

Local authorities earlier appealed to the Inter-Agency Task Force on pandemic response to leave the decision on the face shield rule to them. 

The country continues to record a dip in COVID-19 infections, with new cases falling below the 1,500-mark for the 4th straight day on Friday. 


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Video from PTV