As businesses slowly reopen and resume operations, you’re expected to show up to work, even as public transport remains suspended. Here’s to hoping your company or boss can assemble a transport system that can move their employees.
Companies and employers are not required to provide transport and shuttle services for workers during the modified enhanced community quarantine, the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) on May 20.
“Hindi rin natin ma-obliga ang employer to provide shuttle service, kaya ang problema kung hindi siya magprovide ng shuttle service walang makakapasok,” DOLE Secretary Silvestre Bello III said in a Teleradyo interview.
Under MECQ, mass transport services are either prohibited or limited to partial operations in order to curb the spread of COVID-19. On May 19, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said employees could not be blamed if they can't go to work due to the transport suspension.
Roque also said that employers are encouraged to provide transport services or near-site accommodations so employees can still report to work.
Should employers choose to provide transport services, Bello said employees should not be made to pay a transportation fee.
As offices and various workplaces see the return of workers, spreading the coronavirus is likely. Despite the rapid rate of transmission of COVID-19, Bello said testing for employees returning to work is not mandatory.
However, he said that if companies or employers want to subject employees to mandatory testing, payment for the tests should not come from the employees’ pockets, but should be shouldered by the company or employer.
Aside from possibly providing transport and testing, Bello reminded employers to ensure the safety of employees in industries that were allowed to reopen under MECQ.
Hand sanitizers and face masks must be available for workers.
On May 14, the Palace advised employers and companies not to reopen or resume operations if they could not provide transport services to their employees.
Main image from Wikimedia Commons.