Starting August 15, all employees will be required to wear face shields together with face masks to curb the transmission of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in workplaces.
Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) Secretary Silvestre Bello III announced this new policy on Wednesday in a radio interview.
“Effective August 15, it is not only face mask that workers should wear but also face shields. That is the new protocol,” Bello said.
He added that the Inter-Agency Task Force has advised employers to provide face shields to their employees. Workers will not be allowed to enter the workplace if they will not follow the health protocol, he warned.
Bello said the measure is an added layer of protection to stem further spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) in their working areas.
“Yes, to prevent transmission in workplaces,” he said in a text message when asked on the reason for the policy.
In Memorandum Circular No. 2020-014, the Department of Transportation said commuters are required to wear face shields in public transport starting August 15.
The agency earlier said the wearing of face shield and mask, aside from physical distancing, effectively reduce the transmission of the Covid-19 by as much as 99 percent.
Bello said the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Disease (IATF) has proposed that employers should purchase face shields for their employees.
“The IATF’s proposal is for the employers, 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.
The government has earlier encouraged the use of face shields not only in workplaces and public transport but also in public areas such as markets, hospitals, and quarantine facilities. (via PNA)