Despite the ease in COVID-19 restrictions compared to 2020 and 2021, the global pandemic still has a grasp on the Philippines, and it's important for us to stay safe especially now that the country is set to celebrate All Saints Day or Undas about a week from now.
This Undas season marks the first time that there will be less strict mandates on wearing masks following President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. signing Executive Order No. 3, which stipulates that the nationwide wearing of face masks outdoors will be optional.
Still, it's better to be safe than sorry, and so local government units (LGU) have begun setting their respective health protocols to be followed on the day of the event.
Here are the guidelines that you need to know when honoring the dead during this year's Undas.
In its post, the Manila Public Information Office stressed that children who are 12-years-old and below and unvaccinated individuals will not be allowed to enter inside the Manila North and South Cemeteries starting Oct. 29 to Nov. 2.
Bringing any type of vehicle, alcoholic beverages, flammable materials, weapons, loud sound system, and games used for gambling is also disallowed.
Meanwhile, the cleaning, painting, and renovation of graves is only allowed until Oct. 25.
UNDAS 2022 IMPORTANT REMINDERS: The City of Manila would like to remind individuals and families regarding the following rules to be implemented for #Undas2022— Manila Public Information Office (@ManilaPIO) October 8, 2022
For everyone's information#AlertoManileno pic.twitter.com/aO1M08mIAw
The Pasay City government is also prohibiting persons with fever, coughs, and colds from entering cemetery premises on Undas as well as those who are still not vaccinated. Additionally, bringing alcoholic beverages, weapons, and loud speakers is disallowed.
Visitors must also make sure to wear their masks, wash their hands, and implement physical distancing. The cleaning and painting of graves will be allowed only up to Oct. 28.
In a post by Caloocan City Mayor Dale Gonzalo “Along” Malapitan, only those who are fully vaccinated may be allowed in the cemeteries, wherein they must present their vaccine cards at the gates before they can enter.
The local government also encourages visitors to wear face masks, practice social distancing, and other minimum health protocols in the area.
In order to visit the gravesite of their loved ones, citizens of Navotas City must first acquire a cemetery pass two days before their intended visit, according to the guidelines posted by the city's public information office.
To get the pass, citizens must text their name, address, age, the cemetery they will go to, and the date and time of their visit to the specified phone numbers.
Afterwards, they must wait for a reply for the cemetery pass, which they will need to show to the entrance along with their vaccination cards. The local government is also implementing wearing of face masks and physical distancing of one to two meters.
Visitors are also requested to not bring children and elderly people.
The Malabon City Health Office reminded its citizens to practice social distancing during Undas and that face coverings are required. They are also barring anyone with weapons, alcoholic drinks, loud speakers, and portable cooking stoves from entering the cemeteries.
The government in Davao City announced that citizens must strictly follow the minimum public health standards on COVID-19, which entails wearing of face masks, physical distancing, and proper washing of hands. They also said that private cemeteries are encouraged to implement their own health protocols in coordination with the city's health office.
The LGU is also discouraging persons with flu-like symptoms from visiting the cemeteries. There will be medical tents erected at the entrance for checking of body temperature and for responding to any medical emergencies.