Unvaccinated Citizens Will Be Jailed If They Come Out Of Their Homes In This Nation!
The Philippines government has announced a strict lockdown in capital Metro Manila as Covid cases rise globally thanks to the Omicron variant.
For How Long?
The restrictions apply to unvaccinated residents and travelers who have strict orders to stay at home.
The orders have to be followed at least until Jan. 15 when the alert order imposed on the metropolis is set to lapse.
The restrictions may continue if daily caseloads remain high.
Unvaccinated people have to stay at home, with the exception being to buy essential goods or for medical purposes.
They are banned from all restaurants, malls, hotels and all other leisure establishments.
They cannot avail public transportation either.
To be allowed at on-site jobs, they will have to be tested every two weeks—at their own expense.
Lawbreakers will be fined up to $1,000 or jailed for up to six months, or both.
Those fully vaccinated have no restrictions on mobility.
Establishments have been directed to operate at 30 percent capacity when indoors and 50 percent when outdoors.
To Ease Burden On Healthcare System
The strict approach has been taken to punish those avoiding vaccination despite its availability.
They are more vulnerable to severe cases of infection which will require hospital care and thereby increase the load on the health care system to the “detriment of public health”.
Some unvaccinated people have objected by saying that they cannot do so due to certain medical conditions.
Forcing them to get the jab may worsen their health, thereby they ask the decision to be left up to them.
Officials have also chimed in with criticism, saying that even those fully vaccinated can contract and transmit the virus.
The orders do not consider the reality that the surge in cases is happening despite “102 percent of the target population [being] already vaccinated”, says congresswoman Arlene Brosas.
The city has surpassed its target of fully vaccinating some 9.8 million people which is about 70 percent of its total population of around 14 million.
Why Did This Happen?
Critics maintain that free and easy access to coronavirus testing which can cost upward of $100 in the country is key to curbing transmission.
The surge in cases is being attributed to big extended family gatherings during the holidays, when restrictions were few in number.
Daily cases in mid-December were as low as 169 which shot up to 4,600 by Sunday.