Resto owners group says dine-in allowed for fully vaccinated customers only

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 17, 2021   •   348

MANILA, Philippines—Indoor dining in restaurants in the National Capital Region (NCR) will only be available for fully-vaccinated customers, according to the group Restaurant Owners of the Philippines (Resto Ph).

Under Alert Level 4, indoor dining or dine-in services will be at 10% capacity and is reserved for fully-vaccinated individuals. The NCR is currently under Alert Level 4 until September 30.

Resto Ph president Eric Teng said fully-vaccinated customers would need to present their vaccination card to avail dine-in services. For unvaccinated individuals, they can avail of the outdoor or al fresco services which operate at 30% capacity.

“We reminded our members to be vigilant with enforcing the safety protocols. We post signs asking guests to present their vaccine card before being seated indoors,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Inter-Agency Task Force on the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) said it will continue to observe on a weekly basis the effect of the pilot implementation of Alert Level 4 in Metro Manila before deciding on implementing a new alert level classification. AAC

PNP assessing need to deploy more cops in NCR public areas – Eleazar

Robie de Guzman   •   October 18, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Police General Guillermo Eleazar on Monday said he has directed all unit commanders in the National Capital Region (NCR) to continue to assess the need for the deployment of additional police officers in public areas.

Eleazar issued the directive following the downgrading of COVID-19 alert in the NCR to level 3.

The PNP chief noted that in the first weekend of the Alert Level 3 implementation, a number of people flocked to public areas including churches across the metro, the Dolomite Beach at the Baywalk, the Marikina River Park, the Quirino Grandstand, and the Mall of Asia grounds.

A number of people also went outside for their outdoor exercises, he added.

“I have tasked all concerned police offices to determine if there is a need to deploy more cops to enforce the minimum health standards. Kailangang matiyak pa rin natin ang kaligtasan ng ating mga kababayan dahil baka ito na naman ang pagmulan ng pagtaas ng kaso ng COVID-19 sa NCR,” Eleazar said in a statement.

“Kung gusto nating tuloy-tuloy ang pagbaba ng bilang ng natamaan ng COVID-19, kailangang mapairal pa rin ang disiplina at pagsunod sa mga panuntunan sa ilalim ng Alert Level 3. Hindi dahil may pagluluwag na nagaganap, magsisilabasan na tayo sa ating mga tahanan at babalewalain na ang health and safety protocols,” he added.

Meanwhile, Eleazar said they would wait for the decision of the government’s task force for COVID-19 response regarding the mobility of minors amid the easing of some protocols and opening of more business establishments.

“Kami sa PNP ay tagapagpatupad lamang ng mga batas at regulasyon. Hihintayin namin kung ano ang magiging resolusyon nila sa bagay na ito at amin itong ipapatupad nang maayos,” he said.

The capital region will be under Alert Level 3 until Oct. 31.

Under Alert Level 3, the public’s movement, including intrazonal and interzonal travel, will be allowed except for reasonable restrictions based on age and co-morbidities as determined by the local government units.

Individual outdoor exercises will also be allowed for all ages regardless of vaccination status or co-morbidities.

More establishments will also be allowed to re-open at a maximum of 30 percent capacity.

DOT says Alert Level 3 good for tourism jobs and businesses

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines—The Department of Tourism (DOT) on Thursday said the easing of quarantine classification to Alert Level 3 is good for tourism jobs and businesses.

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) placed the National Capital Region (NCR) under Alert Level 3 from October 16 to 31, 2021.

DOT Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat in a statement said the new quarantine classification is timely especially with the approaching holiday season.

“Family gatherings are part of the Filipino culture, which makes this an important period for leisure travels and bookings,” Puyat said

“The resumption of tourism-related activities in select areas will not only aid hotels and establishments in gradually earning revenue, but will also translate into the restoration of jobs for our displaced tourism workers, especially now that the holiday season is fast approaching,” she added.

Under the Alert Level 3 guidelines dine-in services in restaurants as well as venues for meetings, social events, and tourist attraction shall be allowed to operate at a maximum of 30% indoor capacity for fully vaccinated individuals only. Outdoor venue capacity will be at 50% regardless of vaccination status.

Meanwhile, specialized markets of the DOT such as staycations shall be allowed at 100 percent operational capacity under Alert Level 3. Under the amended guidelines, only DOT-accredited staycation hotels with the Safety Seal certification will be allowed to accommodate staycation guests. AAC

WHO supports downgrading of NCR COVID-19 curbs

Robie de Guzman   •   October 14, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The World Health Organization (WHO) on Thursday expressed support to the Philippine government’s decision to ease restrictions in the National Capital Region (NCR).

“With high vaccination rate in Metro Manila, we believe that we need to adjust and calibrate the restrictions,” said WHO country representative Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe.

“We support the granular lockdowns, we support the easing of restrictions,” he added.

From COVID-19 Alert Level 4, the capital region will shift to Alert Level 3 from October 16 to 31 amid decreasing infection rate.

Under level 3, businesses will be allowed to operate at a higher capacity.

The alert level system, which was first tested in mid-September, is being implemented in the region with granular lockdowns in areas with a high transmission rate.

Abeyasinghe said easing COVID-19 curbs will spur economic activities but he called on local governments to ensure that access to testing is maintained.

He also urged the public to follow health protocols, even those who are already fully vaccinated, and to immediately go on quarantine if they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

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