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Legarda urges Filipinos to abide by the rules of ECQ, reminds to adhere to health protocols

March 29, 2021

Three-term Senator, now Deputy Speaker, Loren Legarda urged the Filipino public to abide by the imposition of enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in the Greater Manila area and to increase adherence to COVID-19 health protocols and guidelines.

“The remarkable increase in the daily positivity rate of COVID-19 cases in the country, at 18 percent recorded on March 28, is very alarming.[1] The additional 10,016 cases as of today, March 29, should serve as a warning to us that we should never be complacent. Our unseen enemy that has cost lives and crippled our livelihoods is still in our midst,” Legarda said.

“The pandemic has devastated our economies and, unfortunately, even highlighted inequalities among our people. Placing Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna and Rizal under an enhanced community quarantine is expected to alleviate the increasing number of positive cases in the country, especially amid the celebration of the coming Holy week. I encourage Filipinos to abide by the rules of the local government units in the imposition of the ECQ and adhere to the health protocols and guidelines to prevent further spread of the virus,” Legarda added.

Legarda stated that tackling the COVID-19 and its impacts require combined efforts from the national government, the LGUs, the private sector, the health experts, and the citizens. The three-term Senator stressed that the “1-week implementation of ECQ will take a heavy toll on the daily lives of the marginalized and vulnerable communities, especially Filipino informal workers who will be deprived of their means to earn a living. However, we should also consider that this intervention, if properly implemented and enforced, would help us mitigate the increasing number of positive cases in the country and will fast track our path to recovery.”

“I am hoping that upon the implementation of ECQ, the government will continuously mobilize its capacity to respond and provide social support and protection for our marginalized and vulnerable communities to complement the imposed ECQ in the Greater Manila area. We have to maintain strong community engagements and promote transparent communications to provide our people the assurance that their basic and essential needs will be taken care of even while their movements are restricted to earn for their family’s daily needs,” Legarda said.

Moreover, Legarda reminded the public to adhere to the Department of Health’s (DOH) BIDA Solusyon sa COVID-19 campaign that promotes proper hand washing, social distancing, and other public health safety measures and aims to encourage the Filipino people to take an active role in the fight against the COVID-19:

• Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds;
• Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, if soap and water are not available;
• Wear mask and face shield when going out, especially in crowded places;
• Cover one’s mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing and sneezing;
• Maintain social distancing, especially from individuals manifesting with flu-like symptoms.
• Be updated with the news from credible sources and avoid sharing fake news;
• Adhere to local advisories and cooperate with the local public health authorities

Legarda also stated that in compliance with the imposition of ECQ until April 4, additional health and safety measures should be observed by residents in the concerned areas to further ensure protection from the virus[2]:

• Strict home quarantine shall be observed in all households, and the movement of all residents shall be limited to accessing essential goods and services, and for work in permitted offices or establishments as well as activities listed hereunder;
• Any person below eighteen (18) years old, those who are over sixty-five (65) years of age, those with immunodeficiency, comorbidity, or other health risks, and pregnant women, shall be required to remain in their residences at all times;
• Gatherings outside of residences shall be prohibited.
• Gatherings at residences with any person outside of one’s immediate household, shall likewise be prohibited.
• Observe the 6 pm to 5 am curfew with exception to authorized persons outside of residence, cargo vehicles, and public transportation

“COVID-19 has drastically disrupted our very systems and economy. Despite being the country with the longest lockdown, we are still battling COVID-19 surge a year after.[3] We have to work as one. Let us comply with the guidelines and health protocols and adjust our behavior to adapt to the current situation. With the citizens cooperation and the government’s adequate and on time social assistance, we can survive this pandemic and recover better and more sustainable than before,” Legarda concluded.***

[1] https://doh.gov.ph/covid19casebulletin380
[2] https://www.officialgazette.gov.ph/downloads/2021/03mar/20210328-OMNIBUS-Guidelines-RRD.pdf
[3] https://time.com/5945616/covid-philippines-pandemic-lockdown/