DTI on 'safety seals': Not mandatory, but encouraged

Having a "safety seal" is by no means mandatory, but it would still be good for local business establishments operating amid the current public health crisis to try to acquire one.

A restaurant staff cleans a table in preparation for the resumption of dine-in service last April 30, 2021. (Ali Vicoy/Manila Bulletin)

"Ang safety seal ay hindi po mandatory (The safety seal is not mandatory)," Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Undersecretary Ireneo Vizmonte said during a televised interview Monday, May 17.

"Pero ineengganyo po natin ang mga establishment na kumuha nito dahil itong safety seal ay nagpapahiwatig po at maganda ang mensahe sa publiko na yung establishment nila ay nakita ng gobyerno na sumusunod sa alituntunin ng minimum health protocol na ipinatutupad ng DOH at iba pang ahensiya ng gobyerno (But we are encouraging establishments to secure one because this safety seal shows and sends a message to the public that an establishment is certified by the government for its strict implementation of minimum health protocols set by the Department of Health and other government agencies)," Vizmonte explained.

A safety seal may be acquired under the government's safety seal certification program.

The seal affirms that an establishment has been found compliant with the necessary health protocols against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). In short, it tells customers that it is safe to be in that establishment.

But the undersecretary stressed that applying for the seal is "voluntary."

He said that at present, a technical working group is now checking the establishments that applied for the safety seal. They are also studying the level of safety they can give to establishments--particularly those that have already secured safety seal certification--to determine whether or not they can be allowed to increase their operating capacity.