MANILA, PHILIPPINES, FEBRUARY 3, 2021 — The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), and Department of Health (DOH) have issued Joint Administrative Order No. 2021-001 (JAO) on Health and Safety Protocols for the Conduct of Film and Audiovisual Production Shoots and Audiovisual Activities During COVID-19 Pandemic.
The DTI-DOLE-DOH JAO was signed by Trade Secretary Ramon Lopez, Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III, and Health Secretary Francisco Duque III on January 12 with immediate effectivity.
The issuance replaces JAO No. 2020-001 of the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP), DOLE, and DOH on the Health and Safety Protocols for the Conduct of Film and Audiovisual Production Shoots and Audiovisual Activities during COVID-19 Pandemic, signed on June 7, 2020, in order to fully align the monitoring and implementation of guidelines with the line agencies.
“Now more than ever, we see the importance of audiovisual as a medium not just to entertain through cinema but to educate as well and with DTI as one of the lead agencies in the JAO, more industries outside the film sector can make use of these protocols for the safe conduct of their audiovisual production shoots,” Diño added.
“We laud our line agencies for this issuance that expands the industries covered by the JAO. The Philippine film industry remains one of the hardest-hit sectors by the pandemic and the issuance of government protocols has helped tremendously in encouraging the sector to safely resume their businesses and operations. Furthermore, the JAO has also inspired other allied sectors like live events and performing arts to adapt by treating their live events as content production while waiting for their industry to reopen. We thank DTI, DOH, and DOLE for affirming the government’s commitment to support the industries during these challenging times as well as allowing FDCP to provide inputs on the applicable guidelines and protocols for the film industry,” said FDCP Chairperson and CEO Liza Diño.
The FDCP welcomes this tripartite government issuance and commends the partner departments for putting focus on the protection of not just film workers but also the rest of the workers in the audiovisual industry.
Among the salient points of the DTI-DOLE-DOH JAO are as follows:
1. Mass gatherings are prohibited, pursuant to DOH Administrative Order No. 2020-0015.
At any given point in time, only a maximum of 50 individuals shall be allowed to partake in public activities in low-risk areas, and as determined by its risk-severity rating, subject to at least 1-meter physical distancing.
However, individuals working on-site must not exceed a total of 100 per day.
2. To monitor and manage Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) within the work environment including COVID-19 site protocols, there must be at least one OSH officer provided for each production venue.
3. Workers must wear their personal protective equipment (PPE), to be provided by producers, such as surgical masks and face shields.
4. Engineering controls must be employed: routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces and objects, and provision of handwashing stations, hand sanitizers, and footbath mats in all entrances.
5. Interzonal movement for conducting audiovisual productions shall remain prohibited except when the localities have the same quarantine setup as it will be considered as movement within a single quarantine zone.
6. Emergency Management: Producers must ensure that workers understand that any individual exhibiting flu-like symptoms such as fever, coughing, or chest congestion must immediately inform their production, subject themselves to self-quarantine, and inform their Barangay Health Emergency Response Team (BHERT) or Local Health Office.
7. In accordance with the OSH Standards reportorial requirements, the producer shall furnish the DOLE Regional Office/s having jurisdiction over the shooting location the reports required by the host local government unit (LGU).
8. Pursuant to DOLE Department Order 198, s. 2018, workers or their representatives may report accidents, dangerous occurrences, and hazards, especially possible violations of health and safety protocols, to DOLE Hotline 1349 or to the DOLE Office with jurisdiction over the work area.
The FDCP also thanks the DOH for considering its recommendation submitted last October to increase the number of workers in a production site from 50 to a total of 100 workers per day. In 2020, the FDCP received 525 registrations through the Safe Filming Program, and increasing the number of workers was the sentiment of the registrants. Hence, the FDCP submitted such recommendation to the line agencies.
The national film agency reiterates its cooperation with the government and film and audiovisual industry in promoting safe filming and ensuring compliance with the DOH’s prescribed minimum public health standards amid the COVID-19 pandemic. It vows to continue its support programs for safe filming for the welfare of workers and betterment of the film and audiovisual industry.