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Buses for fully vaccinated commuters proposed
“This is very crucial as this will complement our previous request to Health Secretary (Francisco) Duque and IATF-EID on the proposal of micro-herd immunity and ‘safe spaces,’ where office buildings with 80 percent fully vaccinated employees will be allowed to increase operational capacity of up to 100 percent from the current 50 percent,” Concepcion said last July 21.
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Buses for fully vaccinated commuters proposed

(The Philippine Star) - July 23, 2021 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — In a recent meeting with the transport sector, presidential adviser for entrepreneurship Joey Concepcion tossed the idea of having buses for fully vaccinated passengers to increase capacity and augment mobility as the nation reopens the economy.

“This is very crucial as this will complement our previous request to Health Secretary (Francisco) Duque and IATF-EID on the proposal of micro-herd immunity and ‘safe spaces,’ where office buildings with 80 percent fully vaccinated employees will be allowed to increase operational capacity of up to 100 percent from the current 50 percent,” Concepcion said last July 21.

The Go Negosyo founder said the main objective was to ensure that every passenger can safely travel from home to workplace, and vice-versa.

“Buses with fully vaccinated passengers will give greater confidence to the commuting public and as the private sector is able to achieve micro herd immunity in the workspaces such as in our buildings, safe transport will also be assured from the home to workplace,” he said.

Concepcion has been consulting various sectors, such as the mall and building owners, salons, restaurants and retail, to create a roadmap toward the next normal.

Meanwhile, Nagkakaisang Samahan ng Nangangasiwa ng Panlalawigang Bus sa Pilipinas Inc. (NSNPBPI) president Vincent Rondaris welcomed the dialogue and expressed his gratitude to Concepcion, saying the discussion provided an avenue for the transport sector to finally be able to air their concerns.

“We feel that we are a forgotten sector and we know that we perform a very critical service to our people,” said Rondaris, who noted the lockdowns and current policies have kept most public transportation units off the road.

Victory Liner general manager and president Marivic del Pilar said that for routes that are open only 20 percent are allowed to operate with 50 percent capacity.

“So, the result is a lot of people who work in Metro Manila are now lining up in our terminal in Caloocan, Pampanga, or Cavite. If we don’t bring back the supply of buses in Metro Manila or in other cities, the convergence will become a super-spreader. It’s a demand and supply issue. We have to allow more buses to ply to be able to make the ridership not so cramped inside the buses,” Del Pilar said.

Alex Yague, executive director of the Provincial Bus Operators Association of the Philippines, lauded the proposal to boost vaccination efforts for the transportation sector so they can do away with costly antigen tests.

Yague called on the government to give drivers and conductors, who are mostly based in the provinces, more access to vaccines.

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