BAGUIO CITY – The city government has amended its ordinance requiring the mandatory wearing not only of face masks but face shields outside their homes.
Aileen Refuerzo, Public Information Office chief, on Saturday said the city’s legislative body approved on final reading Ordinance No. 49, series of 2021, which amended Ordinance No. 45-2020 or the Face Mask Ordinance of Baguio City by incorporating the face shield requirement.
“The city government will enforce the Face Mask and Face Shield Ordinance of 2021 following completion of its amendment process,” Refuerzo said on Saturday.
The measure, she added, declares that it is “unlawful” for all persons including tourists and outsiders to go to public places, buildings, national roads, or highway, sidewalks, walkways, or public conveyances or other similar establishments, without wearing face mask and face shield until the threat of the Covid-19 is completely eliminated in the country.
She said the amended ordinance now also regulates the indiscriminate disposal of personal protective equipment (PPE).
Refuerzo said the ordinance also prohibits transacting business with any person not wearing a face mask and a face shield in the public markets, supermarkets, groceries, malls, shopping centers, and government offices.
“Employees, workers or personnel within the establishments and offices may momentarily remove their face shields where the conduct of their work does not involve face to face or person to person interaction with clients, customers, visitors or co-employees and provided that social or physical distancing is observed and/or the presence of a plastic barrier in between the transacting parties,” she added.
The new policy, she said, also includes banks which is the subject of a joint memorandum circular of the Departments of Trade and Industry (DTI) and Labor and Employment (DOLE).
The acts of hoarding, profiteering, or manipulating the prices for face masks or face shields being sold to the general public and indiscriminately discarding or disposing of used and/or damaged face mask, face shield, gloves, and tissues or any fabric used in cleaning face shields are also prohibited under the revised ordinance, she said.
The penalty for non-wearing of face mask is PHP1,000, PHP2,000, and PHP3,000 for the first to third offense, respectively and cancellation of business permit if applicable.
The penalties for non-wearing of face shield and indiscriminate disposal of used or damaged face masks and face shields are PHP500, PHP1,000, and PHP2,000 for first to third offense, respectively, and cancellation of business permit if applicable.
According to the ordinance, face masks and face shields will not be required to be worn by infants and children who are two years old and below; when eating or drinking in public places; where the wearing of the said PPE gears impedes physical and sensory functioning of Persons with Disability (PWDs); and, where patients have been advised by their physicians against wearing face shields due to a particular medical condition.
Persons engaged in activities that require physical exertion such as brisk walking, jogging, running, biking, aerobic exercises, and other forms of physical exercise provided that physical distancing is strictly observed; and where the wearing of face shields directly cause hazard or impede vision or mobility while in the conduct of work or while driving vehicles were also specifically mentioned as exempted from this ordinance. Liza Agoot / PNA – northboundasia.com