Parents will not be allowed to pick up their children who are stranded in Metro Manila and other cities and regions, even as the rest of the Philippines transitions into general community quarantine (GCQ) on May 16, 2020, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) announced on Wednesday.
“Kahit man gustuhin natin ay hindi pa po nila puwedeng personal na sunduin dahil nga mayroon tayong stay-at-home policy,” DILG Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said during a live broadcast of the Laging Handa briefing.
(Even if we wanted to, parents will still not be allowed to personally fetch their children because of our stay-at-home policy.)
Despite the GCQ status, travel will still be limited in these areas, according to Malaya.
“Limited pa rin po ang galaw ng tao at hindi puwedeng bumiyahe na lang mula sa probinsiya papuntang Metro Manila ang mga magulang na gustong pauwiin ‘yung kanilang mga anak,” Malaya explained, noting that parents might be barred from passing through police checkpoints.
(Movement is still limited so parents cannot travel from the provinces to Metro Manila to take their children home.)
Stranded students may instead sign up for the Hatid Estudyante program, a government initiative that aims to bring home stranded students. According to Philippine Ports Authority General Manager Jay Santiago, who also heads the program, more than 10,300 students have already registered online. They have already coordinated with 2 local government units to facilitate the return of the stranded students starting today, May 14.
Under the GCQ, public transportation may be allowed to operate but at limited capacities. (Check out the guidelines here.)
According to the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), more than 9,000 tertiary students are stuck in dormitories and schools all over the country.