The Manila government has made discrimination against persons with the coronavirus disease, those suspected with infection, and all health workers, punishable by law.
City Ordinance No. 8624 or the “Anti COVID-19 Discrimination Ordinance of 2020” prohibits any form of harassment or discrimination against the above-mentioned persons as well as government forces in the frontlines.
The Manila ordinance was created following reports of persons being evicted from their houses or rejected from establishments out of fear that they could infect others.
Some social media posts went as far as spreading names of individuals who are allegedly infected with coronavirus.
Under the ordinance, people who will make false utterance, humiliate, harass, discriminate, and refuse to provide assistance to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients, those who are under monitoring and investigation, recovered patients, and frontline workers will be penalized.
Penalties include a fine of P5,000 or imprisonment of up to six months or both.
President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday also ordered the police and military to watch out for anyone who will harass health workers.
This came after a hospital personnel in Tacurong City, Sultan Kudarat was allegedly attacked by strangers by throwing bleach at his face.