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‘Minimum’ safety protocols in place as Cebu shifts to GCQ

By: Rosalie O. Abatayo - CDN Digital | May 19,2020 - 11:34 PM
safety protocol

EO No. 17 defining the general community quarantine protocols, standards, and guidelines. | Rosalie Abatayo

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Minimum mandatory safety or public health protocols will continue to be in place in Cebu province’s 44 towns and six component cities as the province downgrades to general community quarantine (GCQ) by midnight on Wednesday, May 20, 2020.

READ: ECQ-to-GCQ transition for Cebu province this May 20

While the protocols are more “relaxed,” based on Governor Gwendolyn Garcia’s Executive Order no. 17 issued on Tuesday evening, May 19,  leisure or unnecessary movements continue to be prohibited under the GCQ.

Garcia said the public also still needs to bring with them quarantine passes when they go outside to carry out tasks.

The wearing of face masks, shields, and other protective equipment is still mandatory when going out. Public or private institutions are tasked to put up hand washing or sanitizing stations in “high-touch areas” within their premises.

‘Placement of relevant on-site signage bearing reminders to practice physical distancing, regular handwashing and sanitizing, medical and health information, hotlines to health/ police/ emergency workers, as well as directions to the appropriate handwashing and sanitizing stations, testing stations or· facilities, quarantine facilities, and other such relevant information [shall be observed].’

While some establishments are already allowed to reopen, all employees are required to maintain a physical distance of at least one meter from each other.

“Placement of relevant on-site signage bearing reminders to practice physical distancing, regular handwashing and sanitizing, medical and health information, hotlines to health/ police/ emergency workers, as well as directions to the appropriate handwashing and sanitizing stations, testing stations or· facilities, quarantine facilities, and other such relevant information [shall be observed],” EO no. 17 reads.

The 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew will continue to be in place for unemployed and non-exempt persons.

The province is also imposing a 24/7 home quarantine policy on all persons under 21 years old and those who have pre-existing health conditions. Those aged 18 to 20 years old who work in establishments and businesses that are allowed to operate, however, are exempted from this rule.

Under the GCQ, the reopening of businesses is already allowed except for:

  • Gyms, fitness, sports, and recreation centers
  • Bars and pubs
  • Karaoke establishments
  • Movie houses
  • Public swimming pools
  • Cockpits and other recreation establishments.

Dine in allowed but…

Hotel, resorts, and other accommodation establishments, although permitted to operate, are required to limit their bookings to one person per room, regardless of whether their guests are couples or family members.

“Group celebrations, parties, activities, and other gatherings of any form are strictly prohibited. For purposes of this order, ten or more persons gathered in an area shall be considered as a gathering,” the EO reads.

Dining inside restaurants, eateries and fast-food chain are also allowed provided that the establishment will only cater half of its original dine-in capacity.

Malls and shopping centers, while allowed to operate, are also prohibited from turning on their air-conditioning units and wireless internet connections in order to prevent people from visiting the malls just to “cool off” or connect to the WiFi. /bmjo

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