LGUs told to pass ordinance for observance of minimum health standards

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 02 2021 09:14 AM | Updated as of Mar 02 2021 09:20 AM

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MANILA - The Department of the Interior and Local Government said Tuesday it would make mandatory local ordinances requiring the public to observe minimum health standards.

The DILG made the decision after government eased and standardized domestic travel. Local officials were consulted prior to the agency's move, said Undersecretary Epimaco Densing Jr.

"Magpapalabas na ho kami ng memorandum sa lahat ng ating lokal na gobyerno na magpasa ng ordinansa na magpaparusa sa mga taong lalabas ng bahay at naglalakad sa kanilang lokal na gobyerno na hindi nagpapractice ng minimum public health standards, kasama ng mga manlalakbay," he told ABS-CBN's Teleradyo.

(We will release a memorandum mandating all local governments to pass an ordinance penalizing residents outside their homes who don't practice minimum public health standards.)

Shoppers traverse the streets in the Divisoria market area in Manila on December 13, 2020. Mark Demayo, ABS-CBN News

The practice of minimum health standards--such as wearing of face masks, observation of physical distancing--prevents virus spread, according to Densing.

"Basta po tayo ay nagpapractice ng minimum health standards, 95 percent na tsansa na di tayo mahahawa o makakapanghawa sa sinuman," he said.

(If we practice minimum health standards, there's a 95 percent chance we won't contract the virus or infect others.)

"Ang importante dito mga disiplina. Kahit di kayo opisyales ng barangay, sabihan niyo po ang inyong kapitbahay, kaibigan, o kahit di niyo kilala na 'pag di sila nag-practice ng minimum health standards makakapangahawa sila."

(What's important here is discipline. Even if you're not a village official, tell your neighbors, friends, even strangers that if they don't follow minimum health standards they can spread the virus.)

Under the new IATF guidelines for cross-border travel, tourists are no longer required to secure travel authority from the police and health certificate from the local government of origin, said Densing.

Government leaves it up to local authorities whether to require confirmatory swab tests, he added.