THE current social distancing in public transport systems is at least one meter between passengers.
Senator Christopher “Bong” Go today backed the recommendation of health professionals for the government to defer its plan to ease social distancing protocols in public utility vehicles and transportation systems like railways.
Go expressed the belief that President Rodrigo Duterte will also weigh the warning aired by medical practitioners because they are the experts in health matters, including how to stem the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019.
“The economy is important but the lives of Filipinos are more important,” Go said in Filipino. “Money can be earned but life cannot be bought with money. A life lost is lost forever.”
Go said he agrees with the recommendation of doctors because once people see the easing of physical distancing measures in public transportation, they might lower their guards against COVID-19 in other places.
The approved distance between passengers at present is at least one meter, with plans to reduce it to .75 meter and then to .50 meter met with opposition by netizens and health workers.
“Let us always remember that according to studies from experts, physical distancing is one of the most effective ways to avoid transmission of COVID-19,” Go said.
“In addressing the needs of the public transport sector, let us find other ways to help the livelihood of PUV operators and drivers without putting at risk their lives and the lives of others,” he added.
The senator said opening the economy should not be at the expense of keeping the riding public safe from COVID-19.