Seeing kids outside but not wearing masks is not a sign exclusive to one city or municipality. But in Manila City, Mayor Isko Moreno is planning to penalize parents of these kids.
“Let’s start jailing irresponsible parents,” Moreno wrote on Facebook on July 13, Monday.
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According to a report by the Manila Police District (MPD), as of the morning of July 13, there were 1,039 violators of Ordinance No. 8644 or the Mandatory Use of Face Mask in Public. In violation of Ordinance No. 8547, or Manila City’s curfew hours, the MPD apprehended 9,367 violators. Most of them were minors.
Even the 1,028 rescued street dwellers of Manila’s Department of Social Welfare were children who were abandoned or neglected by their parents. Some of them tested positive for COVID-19.
“I don’t mind kung mapuno ang ating mga kulungan ng mga pabayang magulang dahil sa paglabag sa Ordinance No. 8243,” Moreno said, referring to the Anti-Child Endangerment Ordinance of the City Manila.
The Manila mayor already ordered MPD Brigadier General Rolly Miranda and MDSW Director Re Fugoso to start filing cases against parents who neglected their duties and responsibilities.
“Hard time requires hard decision para mapigilan ang pagkalat ng COVID-19,” Moreno added. He also warned parents to be responsible for their children.
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Pampanga’s local government had drafted a similar resolution, penalizing parents or guardians of minors who violate curfew and do not wear masks in public, Inquirer reported. Not wearing a mask carries a fine of Php20,000 to Php50,000 or jail time of a month to six months or both. Breach of curfew hours is punishable by community service.
Pampanga Governor Dennis Pineda said they are punishing the parents and guardians “because they are responsible for their young wards.” Under general community quarantine, persons under age 21 are advised to stay at home.