Better Normal Bill sets guidelines for public and work places

The House of Representatives approved on August 18  a bill which mandates several measures to be observed in public spaces and workplaces for the purpose of containing the corona virus pandemic.

This is House Bill 6864 or an “Act Establishing  Public Health and Environmental Standards and Safeguards for the Better Normal in the Workplace, Public Spaces and Communities Towards a Sustainable Recovery from the Coronavirus Disease 19” otherwise known as the “Better Normal Act.”

The measure requires the general public to wear face masks, earloop masks, indigenous, reusable or do-it-yourself masks, face shields, handkerchiefs or such other protective material when in the workplace, public places and communities.

The legislation also mandates owners, managers and administrators of public spaces and workplaces to establish handwashing facilities or sanitizing stations as well as to monitor the temperature of those visiting their respective areas. 

For public transport, passengers are required to:  (1) sanitize their hands prior to boarding the vehicle; (2)  sit one seat apart from each other; and (3) wear face masks and other protective shields while inside the vehicle.

Contactless payment systems will be utilized.

Moreover, all private commercial and industrial workplaces and other businesses will need to submit their respective management plans  to the concerned local  government unit in order to show  compliance with the safety measures aimed at.

Businesses are also asked to adopt a flexible working schedule, which should be incorporated in their management plans.

Under the New Normal Act, public gatherings continue to be prohibited, with exceptions, as provided by the implementing rule and regulations (IRR) of the bill which will soon be announced.