MANILA – The results of a recent survey show overwhelming support among Metro Manila respondents for the government to provide public transportation during the ongoing quarantine as tens or even hundreds of thousands of workers return to work in the National Capital Region after the shift to Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ).
89% of the 1,000 Metro Manila residents who participated in the May 5-8, 2020 run of the NCR COVID-19 Online Panel Survey conducted by PUBLiCUS Asia Inc. said they approve of “providing government-controlled transportation services during the quarantine”. Only 11% of respondents disapprove.
While the shift to MECQ has allowed for the limited return to work of some employees within certain industries in Metro Manila, the guidelines released by the national government still do not allow for the operation of public transportation such as jeepneys, buses, and trains.
Instead, the government is encouraging the private sector to provide shuttles for employees who will return to work under the MECQ.
“The lack of public transportation options during the MECQ will make it difficult for workers to report to their physical places of employment unless they own a car or motorcycle. This would defeat the purpose of re-opening certain sectors of the economy in the first place,” said Mr. Aureli C. Sinsuat, PUBLiCUS Executive Director and spokesperson.
Sinsuat said the national government and NCR local government units should consider providing government-controlled buses or shuttles for workers under the MECQ.
“The idea of providing government-controlled transportation during the quarantine is a popular one among our Metro Manila panelists. It also makes sense from a policy perspective. Government-operated buses and shuttles would give workers critical access to transportation and allow authorities to strictly enforce physical distancing and other health measures onboard,” he said.
“It is doubtful that the private sector will be able to serve 100% of the demand of their employees for home-to-work shuttles. This is why the government should seriously consider stepping in if they want the shift to MECQ and partial re-opening of the NCR economy to succeed,” he added.
NCR COVID-19 Online Panel Survey is an independent non-commissioned tracking survey designed by PUBLiCUS and VOX Opinion Research (VOX). The survey data was processed and analyzed by VOX, the in-house strategic research arm of PUBLiCUS.
The survey aims to gauge public opinion and perceptions on the following COVID-19-related key indicators: Living Standards and Needs during the Enhanced Community Quaratine; National Government Performance; Local Government Performance; Media and Foreign Institutions; Existing/Proposed COVID-19 Policies.
More information on the purposive sampling methodology and panel selection process of the NCR COVID-19 Online Panel Survey can be found here.
Reference: Mr. Aureli C. Sinsuat, PUBLiCUS Executive Director