Community service, fines for quarantine violators preferred

By Christopher Lloyd Caliwan

September 3, 2020, 9:27 am

<p>Joint Task Force Covid Shield commander Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar <em>(File photo)</em></p>

Joint Task Force Covid Shield commander Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar (File photo)

MANILA – The government's Covid-19 enforcement arm called for the payment of fines and community service as penalties for violators of the curfew and quarantine protocols.

Joint Task Force Covid Shield commander Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar on Wednesday said these are logical punishments since detaining violators would put them at risk of infection inside cramped detention facilities.

He added that the arrest and the filing of charges could be the last resort if the violators become unruly and disrespectful to law enforcers or the violators are repeat offenders.

“Almost all of the barangays and local government units (LGUs) have no detention facilities so the tendency is to turn over those who would be arrested to the local police. As part of the decongestion measures of police detention facilities, it is advisable that violators are punished by community service or payment of fine as sanctions,” he said.

Warnings should not be given to the violators, Eleazar said, because the protocols and quarantine rules have been in force for more than five months.

"Everybody should know by now about the curfew and other quarantine rules being enforced by the government,” he added.

Eleazar said community service as a penalty would be additional manpower for the projects and programs of the LGUs such as in the cleanliness and beautification and fixing of damaged school facilities.

For payment of fines, he said that the money collected from violators will be an additional source of income for the coronavirus disease 2019 response and programs of LGUs.

The penalties for curfew and quarantine violations would depend on the local ordinances of the LGUs, Eleazar said. (PNA)