Employers should provide face coverings for workers: Bello

Employers should provide face coverings for workers: Bello

MANILA – The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) said on Wednesday wearing of face shields apart from face masks in workplaces will be required beginning August 15, as it tapped employers to provide face shields for their workers.

“Effective August 15, hindi lang face mask ang gamitin mo, kasama na ang face shield. So, ‘yun ang bagong protocol ngayon (you will not only use face masks, including face shield. So, that is the new protocol today),” Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III told the reporters in Antipolo City.

Covid-19 transmission is not only limited to the nose, he said, and could also affect the eyes.

Bello said the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF) has proposed that employers should purchase face shields for their employees.

“Ang proposal ng IATF is for the employer, tutal one time lang naman––minsan ka lang bibili baka hindi naman masyadong mabigat (The IATF’s proposal is for the employes, after all, it’s just one time––you can only buy once, it’s not too heavy for them),” Bello said, noting that employees who will not comply with the protocol will not be allowed to go to their workplaces.

Bello said employers are liable for non-observance of the health measure in the workplace and might cause the closure of the establishment.

“Yung sa smoking area isang tao lang at a time, hindi puwedeng dalawa (those who will use the smoking area, one person at a time. Two is not allowed),” he added.

Support to OFWs

Meanwhile, Bello said the labor department continues to support overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) hard-hit by the health crisis.

“Isa sa responsibility ng DOLE yung ating mga OFW kaya nagdala ako dito ng konting pondo para sating mga OFW (One of the responsibilities of DOLE is our OFWs so I brought a little fund for our OFWs),” he said, referring to OFWs living in Rizal province.

Bello said they would help at least 20 OFWs in the area.

“Kami sa DOLE yan po ang ating tinututukan na ang ating mga mangagawa lalo na dito sa lalawigan ng Rizal, sa lungsod ng Antipolo ay hindi mawalan ng trabaho (We at DOLE, we are focusing on our workers, especially here in Rizal province, in the city of Antipolo, that people don’t lose their jobs),” he added.

Bello said the labor department has provided the livelihood program under the DOLE Starter Kit or NegosyosaKariton (Nego-Kart).

“Actually, hindi naman yan limited sa ating OFWs (it’s not limited to our OFWs), that is given under the livelihood program. We are giving Negosyo-Kart and you will be given an investment amounting to PHP15,000 to start a street food business,” Bello said. (PNA)

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