Hats off policy in establishments proposed

BAGUIO CITY  – The City Council approved on first reading a proposed ordinance mandating patrons or clients of banks, pawnshops, jewelry stores, or any establishments covered by Ordinance No. 49, series of 2018 to remove, surrender their hats, caps, bonnets, helmets, face masks, shades or pull their sweatshirts, hoodies from their heads before entering the establishments and providing penalties for violation of the measure.

The ordinance authored by Councilor Joel Alangsab stated that the measure shall apply to all banks, cooperatives, money changers, pawnshops, jewelry stores or any establishment covered by Ordnance No. 49, series of 2018 operating within the jurisdiction of the local government.

Ordinance No. 49, series of 2018 requires owners or operators of hotels, malls, supermarkets, amusement centers, tourist spots and other establishments or areas where the public converge to adopt tighter security measures through the installation of closed circuit television (CCTV), use of metal detectors and the like, and providing penalties for violation of the edict.

Under the proposed ordinance, it shall be unlawful for any patron or client to refuse the removal, surrender or lowering down of any headgear or device worn on the head whereby a substantial portion of the face is hidden or covered before entering the establishments. It shall also be unlawful for owners or operators of the establishments to allow entry of patrons and clients to enter and transact business inside the establishment without complying with the prohibitions.

The ordinance stipulated owners and operators of establishments shall prominently post and display at the entrance or door of the establishment the warning: “Take off your headgear before entering.”

The ordinance added the signage shall be at least 8 inches by 11 inches in size and shall show the required information.

Further, the ordinance will required establishment owners and operators to provide a depository area for headgears which shall be retrieved by the owners after completion of the transactions.

Violators of the pertinent provisions of the ordinance shall be fined P1,000 for the first offense, P2,000 for the second offense and P3,000 for the third and succeeding offense.

For owners and operators who refuse to adhere to the provisions of the measure, they will be imposed a fine of P2,000 for the first offense, P3,000 for the second offense and P5,000 and/or imprisonment for a period not exceeding 3 months at the discretion of the court for the third and succeeding offenses.

Moreover, establishment owners and operators who fail to post or display the appropriate signages shall be fined P2,000 for the first offense, P3000 for the second offense and P5,000 for the third and succeeding offenses.

The ordinance tasked the Baguio City Police Office (BCPO) in coordination with the City Permits and Licensing Division and the Public order and Safety Division (POSD) to ensure strict compliance by the establishments to the implementation of the measure.

By Dexter A. See

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