Pateros mayor lifts mandatory use of face shields outdoors

Published November 15, 2021, 3:48 PM

by Jonathan Hicap

Pateros Mayor Miguel “Ike” Ponce II has scrapped the rule requiring the mandatory use of face shields outdoors.

Ponce announced that he has issued Monday an executive order lifting the mandatory use of face shields except inside hospitals, health centers, enclosed vaccination sites and isolation facilities.

Pateros Mayor Miguel Ponce III visiting an isolation facility at P. Manalo Elementary School last April (Pateros municipal government)

“This is aligned with the Metro Manila Development Authority resolution recommending (to the Inter-Agency Task Force) that the use of face shields will no longer be mandatory except in places that I have mentioned. The use of face shields is now optional,” said the mayor during a live broadcast on Facebook.

He added, “If you want to use it as an added protection, you can use a face shield but you will no longer be required and apprehended if you do have a face shield unless you are going to enter a hospital and health center, and enclosed vaccination and isolation facilities.”

Ponce said he has ordered hospital and health center administrators, doctors, heads of health centers, enclosed vaccination facilities and isolation facilities that a person not wearing a face shield should not be allowed to enter.

The mayor’s decision follows the actions of other local government units (LGUs) in Metro Manila lifting the mandatory use of face shields in their areas.

MMDA Chairman Benhur Abalos announced last week that Metro Manila mayors will recommend to the IATF to remove the mandatory use of face shields except in hospitals, health centers and public utility vehicles, which are considered as critical areas.

“We will recommend the scrapping of mandatory wearing of face shields to the IATF especially since the majority of the eligible population in Metro Manila are already fully vaccinated and the average daily attack rate as well as the number of COVID-19 cases are going down,” said Abalos.

The IATF has implemented the mandatory use of face shields in all public places since December 2020.

Last September, President Duterte lifted the use of face shields except in closed, crowded, and close contact areas.