Aambis-Owa party-list Rep. Sharon Garin reaffirmed her support to the government’s move to reduce the required physical distance inside public transportation units, saying this will boost country’s transportation capacity and help the economy get back on its feet in no time.
The chair of the House economic affairs committee noted that the mobility restrictions continue to choke the industry, “much to the detriment of transport operators and drivers who continue to endure the effects of a plummeting economy.”
“Transportation is integrated and interconnected with all businesses. The economic affairs committee of the House of Representatives has always pushed for easing up on public transportation. We have consistently pushed and lobbied for this because this the primary and most important component in reviving our economy,” Garin explained.
She cited promising findings in Japan and France where “links of new Covid-19 clusters to public transport remain zilch.”
But she said this was made possible by constant wearing of face masks and face shields, and limiting close-range conversations.
Underscoring the urgency of easing restrictions for the transportation sector, Garin reminded the public that the estimated loss of revenue due to the suspension of public transportation operations on a monthly basis is P21.3 billion.
“Without public transport, people can’t go to work and businesses won’t open. When supply for public transportation is less than demand, people forego social distancing. The wheels of the economy won’t start turning without ample public transportation,” she said.
The Department of Transportation (DOTr) is set to implement the new distancing guidelines on September 14, in which the one-meter physical distancing will be reduced to 0.75. It will be reduced further in the coming weeks.