Last Monday, May 12, the Philippine government announced some major changes in the quarantine system that some areas in the country need to follow. From May 16 until May 31, 2020, Metro Manila, Laguna, and Cebu City will be under MECQ or Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine.
So how is it different from ECQ, which we've been following these past two months? Here are the things you need to remember:
People living in areas under MECQ are still required to stay at home, but are allowed to go out to:
Gatherings are limited to five (5) persons only. Social distancing should still be observed.
Domestic flights are still not allowed. International flights inbound are allowed but are limited.
Public transportation will also remain suspended. People going to work can take private shuttles provided by their companies and their own cars with physical distancing observed (passengers must be one seat apart). Motorcycles and bicycles can only have one rider.
Physical classes will remain suspended.
Industries that are allowed to fully operate during MECQ:
Agriculture, forestry, fisheries, food business (take-out and delivery only for restaurants), hospitals and clinics
Industries that are partially allowed during MECQ (50% on-site and 50% work from home)
Beverages, electrical machinery, wood products, furniture, non-metallic products, textiles, tobacco products, paper products, rubber and plastic products, coke and refined petroleum products, computer, electronic and optical products, electrical equipment, machinery and equipment, motor vehicles, other transport equipment, and real estate activities, office administrative and support (billing, photocopy, etc.)
Funeral and embalming services, veterinary clinics, security and investigation activities, financial services, legal and accounting, management consultancy activities, architecture and engineering activities, and scientific and research development
Advertising and market research, computer programming and information service activities, rental and leasing, employment activities, photography, fashion, industrial, graphic, and interior design, wholesale and retail trade of motor vehicles, repair of motor vehicles, motorcycles, and bicycles
Film, music, and TV production and publishing activities
Malls and commercial centers and non-leisure establishments or stores are partially allowed but limited to certain industries only.
Industries that are still not allowed to operate during MECQ:
Barbershops and salons
Gyms and sports facilities
Libraries, archives, museums and cultural centers
Travel agencies, tour operators, reservation service and related activities
Personal care services
- Buy essential goods
- Go to work (if working in an industry allowed to operate)
- Exercise--jogging and biking only (should wear face mask and practice social distancing)