A General Community Quarantine (GCQ) refers to the implementation of temporary measures limiting movement and transportation, regulation of operating industries, and presence of uniformed personnel to enforce community quarantine protocols. This definition is provided under Revised Omnibus Guidelines on the Implementation of Community Quarantine in the Philippines dated 29 April 2020, as amended, issued by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).
I. MINIMUM HEALTH STANDARDS
The Omnibus Guidelines requires the observance of minimum public health standards shall be complied with at all times for the duration of the GCQ. Minimum public health standards are guidelines set by the DOH, as well as sector-relevant guidelines issued by government agencies, to aid all sectors in all settings to implement non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPI), which refer to public health measures that do not involve vaccines, medications or other pharmaceutical interventions, which individuals and communities can carry out in order to reduce transmission rates, contact rates, and the duration of infectiousness of individuals in the population to mitigate COVID-19.
II. HOME QUARANTINE
The following are required to remain in their residences at all times, except when indispensable under the circumstances for obtaining essential goods and services or for work in permitted industries and offices:
- (a) Any person below 21 years old
- (b) Those who are 60 years old and above
- (c) Those with immunodeficiency, comorbidities, or other health risks
- (d) Pregnant women
- (e) Any person who resides with any of those in (a) to (d)
III. MOVEMENT OF PERSONS
Movement for leisure purposes are not allowed. The movement of all persons in areas placed under GCQ shall be limited to:
- (a) accessing essential goods and services, and
- (b) work in the offices or industries permitted to operate, as enumerated below
Work in government offices may be at full capacity, or under such alternative work arrangements as agencies deem proper in accordance with the relevant rules and regulations issued by the Civil Service Commission (CSC).
Accredited diplomatic missions and international organizations may be at 50% operational capacity. Alternative work arrangements such as flexible work arrangements, compressed work week, telework, and telecommuting is strongly encouraged.
[For interzonal travel (to or from ECQ, GCQ or no quarantine areas, see Guidelines for Interzonal Movement during the Community Quarantine]
IV. MASS GATHERINGS
Mass gatherings are prohibited. Mass gatherings include, but not limited to:
- movie screenings
- sporting events
- other entertainment activities
- community assemblies
- religious gatherings
- non-essential work gatherings
V. SCHOOLS AND CLASSES
Physical classes shall be suspended for the duration of the GCQ. This notwithstanding, Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) may hold classes through flexible learning arrangements to finish the Academic Year 2019-2020, and may operate at a limited capacity to receive students’ requirements and prepare and issue credentials to students subject to the guidelines as may be issued by the Commission on Higher Education.
Opening of classes for the basic education shall be on 24 August 2020 and ending on 30 April 2021 [per IATF Resolution No. 34 dated 8 May 2020]. Opening of private schools will be allowed within the period provided by law, subject to these requirements:
- School learning continuity plan shall be submitted
- No face-to-face classes will be allowed earlier than 24 August 2020
- From 24 August 2020, face-to-face learning shall only be allowed when the local risk severity grading permits, and subject to compliance with minimum health standards
Adoption of various learning delivery options such as but not limited to face-to-face, blended learnings, distance learnings, and homeschooling and other modes of delivery shall be implemented depending on the local COVID Risk Severity Classification and compliance with minimum health standards.
Conduct of curricular and co-curricular activities involving gatherings such as science fairs, showcase of portfolios, trade fairs, and other similar activities is cancelled, except those conducted online .
VI. CATEGORIES OF INDUSTRIES
The following sectors or industries shall be allowed to operate:
- Category I Industries – Agriculture, fishery, and forestry industries, food manufacturing and food supply chain businesses, including food retail establishments such as supermarkets, grocery stores, and food preparation establishments insofar as take-out and delivery services, food deliver services, health-related establishments, the logistics sector, information technology and telecommunication companies, the media, at full operational capacity;
- Category II Industries – Mining and other manufacturing, export-oriented, and electronic commerce companies, as well as other delivery, repair and maintenance, and housing and office services, at anywhere between fifty percent (50%) up to full operational capacity, and without prejudice to work-from-home and other alternative work arrangements; and
- Category III Industries – Financial Services, BPOs, legal and accounting, and auditing services, professional, scientific, technical, and other non-leisure services, barber shops, salon, and other personal care services as defined by the DTI, and other non-leisure wholesale and retail establishments, at a maximum of fifty percent (50%) work-on-site arrangement, and without prejudice to work-from-home and other alternative work arrangements.
- Category IV Industries – Industries in Category IV are reflected in a separate DTI issuance. [See Detailed List of Sectors Allowed During GCQ, Categories I-IV]
Amusement, gaming, and fitness establishments, as well as those in the kids and the tourism industries, and all Category IV industries may not operate. Specific industries under each category are reflected in a separate document issued by the DTI. [See Detailed List of Sectors Allowed During GCQ, Categories I-IV]
VII. OPERATION OF MALLS AND SHOPPING CENTERS
Limited operations in malls and shopping centers shall be allowed, except for leisure establishments and services which shall continue to be closed. Establishments and services allowed to operate in malls and shopping centers may only operate at 50% operational capacity. Alternative work arrangements such as flexible work arrangements, compressed work week, telework, and telecommuting is strongly encouraged.
Those ages below 21 years old, and those 60 years old and above may not enter malls and shopping centers, except when indispensable under the circumstances for obtaining essential goods and services or for work in establishments located therein.
The DTI may issue guidelines to limit foot traffic in such establishments. [See Guidelines for Malls and Shopping Centers in GCQ Areas (DTI MC No. 20-21)]
VIII. HOTELS AND SIMILAR ESTABLISHMENTS
No hotels or similar establishments shall be allowed to operate, except those accommodating the following:
- (1) For areas outsize Luzon, guests who have existing booking accommodations for foreigners as of 1 May 2020;
- (2) Guests who have existing long-term bookings;
- (3) Distressed Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and stranded Filipinos or foreign nationals;
- (4) Repatriated OFWs in compliance with approved quarantine protocols;
- (5) Non-OFWs who may be required to undergo mandatory facility-based quarantine; and
- (6) Health workers and other employees from exempted establishments under these Omnibus Guidelines and applicable Memoranda from the Executive Secretary.
In all of the foregoing, hotel operations shall be limited to the provision of basic lodging to guests.
IX. PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION
The road, rail, maritime, and aviation sectors of public transportation shall operate at a reduced capacity in accordance with guidelines issued by the Department of Transportation (DOTr). In all public transports, a strict 1-meter distance between passengers shall be observed and appropriate engineering controls in place.
X. CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS
All public and private construction projects, but with strict compliance to the issued construction safety guidelines for the implementation of infrastructure projects during the COVID-19 pandemic. [As amended by IATF Resolution No. 34, series of 2020, dated 8 May 2020]
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