IATF Approves Dine-in, Salon Services in MECQ Zones

Toyo Eatery Ambiance | Photo by JL Javier

MANILA, Philippines – The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) has allowed the resumption of dine-in services, as well as the reopening of barbershops and beauty parlors in areas under the modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ), Malacañang announced Thursday.

This, after members of the IATF-EID met on Thursday afternoon to finalize the list of establishments that may operate in MECQ zones.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the IATF-EID approved the recommendation to allow restaurants, eateries, commissaries, and other food preparation establishments to resume their indoor dine-in services in areas under MECQ “at an initial 10 percent venue or seating capacity.”

“These food preparation establishments, however, may operate their indoor dine-in services beyond this limitation, provided that they comply with Joint Memorandum Circular No. 21-01 (s. 2021) or the Safety Seal Certification Program,” Roque, also spokesperson of IATF-EID, said in a press statement issued Thursday night.

Initially, indoor dine-in services of food preparation establishments like commissaries, restaurants, and eateries are prohibited in places under MECQ.

The IATF-EID, Roque said, also allowed the resumption of operations of beauty salons, beauty parlors, barbershops and nail spas at an initial 30 percent venue or seating capacity in MECQ areas.

Personal care services of beauty salons, beauty parlors, barbershops are permitted, on condition that clients and service providers wear face masks “at all times,” Roque said.

“These personal care establishments, however, may operate beyond this limitation, provided that they comply with Joint Memorandum Circular No. 21-01 (s.2021) or the Safety Seal Certification Program,” he said.

Roque said other personal care establishments and services are still not allowed to operate.

Meaning, personal care services such as medical aesthetic clinics, cosmetic or derma clinics, make-up salons, reflexology, aesthetics, wellness and holistic centers, acupuncture and electrocautery establishments, massage therapy, tanning services, body piercings, tattooing and similar services remain prohibited, he added.

MECQ has been extended in Metro Manila, Bulacan, Cavite, Laguna, and Rizal, or the so-called National Capital Region Plus, until May 14.

On the other hand. Quirino and Abra provinces, as well as the City of Santiago in Isabela, will stay under MECQ from May 1 to 31.

Local governments can still make an appeal on the new quarantine classification.

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