BUREAU of Customs commissioner, Rey Leonardo ‘Jagger’ Guerrero, has issued a memorandum for the implementation of a ‘compressed work schedule’ for the entire agency as the country continues to battle the spread of the highly-infectious, ‘COVID-19.’
Under the plan, which is to become operational by March 23, customs employees, including those under ‘contract of service/job orders,’ shall adopt a 4-day, 10-hour work schedule.
Employees are to report from work starting from 7 until 6 p.m. in the evening with a 1-hour lunch break at 11:30 am.
The regulation, however, exempts those manning the country’s airports and other units involved in 24/7 operation such as port operations, intelligence and enforcement.
The customs chief over the weekend also ordered the massive “cleaning and disinfecting activities” in the entire agency to be spearheaded by the bureau’s General Services Division (GSD) and the concerned district collection offices nationwide.
Guerrero also gave customs district collectors the discretion on how to implement the 4-day work schedule “taking into consideration the complete delivery of (public) service.” The schedules are to be submitted to the bureau’s Human Resources Division, under deputy commissioner, Donato San Juan.
The customs chief also directed the bureau’s Medical and Dental Division (MDD) to coordinate with the Customs Police (ESS) to make sure that all those transacting with the bureau are given preliminary health check before being allowed entry.
Other measures against COVID-19 were also implemented such as expediting the distribution of donated facemasks to frontline bureau personnel nationwide.
The facemasks were donated by the Federation of Filipino-Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Inc. (FFCCCII) and the Philippine Red Cross (PRC).
Effective March 23, Guerrero also ordered the suspension of all ‘social activities’ and all request for foreign travels, especially to countries also affected by COVID-19; those who travelled to countries with COVID-19 cases are ordered to place themselves under the required 14-day quarantine period.
In case of a confirmed case, the victim shall be immediately placed under quarantine and close medical attention while his or her work place is also to be immediately put under isolation.
For the duration of the national health emergency lasting until April 14, Guerrero stressed the importance of using the various available modern communication technology for those with transactions with the agency