Press Release
April 12, 2020

Sen. Tolentino's statement on contact-tracing efforts of the government

Under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights - of which the Philippines is a signatory - in times of a public emergency threatening the life of a nation, the need to protect public health is a permissible ground for limiting certain rights including liberty of movement, freedom of expression, and the right to freedom of association. It has been said that "the people's well-being is the supreme law" and to further facilitate contact tracing, the same can be invoked. We will need a Presidential Proclamation relative to this, not a mere Interagency Resolution, considering its constitutional significance vis-a-vis policy tradeoffs between data privacy protection and the need to enforce more robust health measures. Perhaps technology could be of great help too. I support the proposal subject to certain time bound limitations while respecting the Constitution."


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