Ilonggos will have to embrace the cold pandemic holidays with Executive Order No. 194 hanging above their heads.
Iloilo City will be maintained under the General Community Quarantine (GCQ) category for the rest of 2020 and Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas has signed Executive Order No. 194 last November 27 to outline the rules on how to party and the reasons not to hold a party.
The order recognizes the significance of continuing to celebrate family and cultural traditions during the holidays but it must ensure the health and safety of everyone underscoring the need to sustain the observance of safety protocols.
Hence, the guidelines on “The Conduct of Christmas/New Year Gatherings and Other Merry-Making Activities” for Iloilo City effective December 1 was set.
How to party under a pandemic
The EO “strongly encouraged” that gatherings be “limited to members of the family living in the same household.”
In the event that families not living in the same household wish to get together for Christmas/New Year, the gathering must be held outdoors, and with proper observance of physical distancing, frequent handwashing, and non-sharing of utensils.
SEE the full text here: EO 194 [11-27-2020]-Iloilo City GCQ
It also urged that a person be assigned to serve food to avoid multiple hands touching serving spoons and plates; preparing, serving and getting of food must be done with facemask worn.
The EO also directed party hosts to implement zoning at the household wherein a particular space be assigned for the elderly and also for young people.
Say goodbye to a party if….
The order “highly discouraged” Christmas parties or gatherings that involve workers and others who belong to different households.
It also discouraged persons not to attend a party especially if they fall under the following description:
- If you are experiencing signs of flu or symptoms of COVID-19 or
- If you have been swabbed and awaiting results,
- Those with travel history for the past five (5) days and
- Those tagged as ‘close contact’ of a person confirmed to have COVID-19 even if asymptomatic.
It also discourage exchange-gifts but if it is extremely necessary, place disinfectants and rubbing alcohol nearby and practice proper hand hygiene before and after opening presents.
And, the most important item, refrain from serving and/or consuming alcoholic drinks.
The EO stressed that health and safety protocols are more difficult, if not impossible, to follow when there is too much alcohol in a person’s system. This applies to family gatherings conducted in a private setting as gatherings in public places are not encouraged.
Further, the prohibition on the public consumption of liquor subsists, according to EO 194.