The Iloilo City government yesterday sent a letter of appeal to the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) to allow other non-essential establishments to open in the city.
“We appealed that the spas, museums and fitness centers or gyms be permitted to operate already during modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) at a limited capacity,” Mayor Jerry P. Treñas said.
The city has been placed under MECQ from August 16 to 31.
“The Ilonggos are overjoyed with this development and business owners together with their employees heaved great sighs of relief as they are now allowed to return to operation. This act of consideration would mean food on more tables and better sleep for our constituents. However, as we gladly announce this change, we are still not spared from the clamor of the rest of the community who belong to establishments and activities still not allowed to operate under MECQ,” the urgent letter stated.
Treñas said the IATF already allowed dine-in in food establishments, and barbershops, beauty salons and nail spas to operate at a very limited capacity.
He hopes the same will be accorded to gyms, fitness centers, spas and museums, subject to conditions, namely: spa, gym and museum goers, especially the attendants, therapists, coaches and trainers must wear masks at all times and other protective gears, wherever practicable; sanitation and disinfection must be frequently conducted; air purifiers and similar devices in accordance with the Safety Seal Certification Program have been installed; and most of the employees of these establishments in Iloilo City have been vaccinated.
“The people are more than ready to do everything they can to be able to return to operation and find means to provide for themselves. At the moment, we have already advised these businesses to see to it that all their employees are vaccinated and their premises are compliant with the Safety Seal Certification Program. The issue of vaccination can easily be addressed considering the aggressive vaccine roll out of the city inoculating not less than 10,000 individuals daily,” the city mayor added.
The urgent letter addressed Sec. Delfin Lorenzana, Sec. Carlito Galvez Jr. and Usec. Epimaco Densing III, likewise emphasized that while the city government does its best to alleviate the economic suffering of the people by putting up community kitchens all throughout the metro, this measure can only do so much as resources are also scarce due to the pandemic./WDJ