June 17, 2020 — The National Emergency Committee (NEC) informs the public that social media postings and rumors that have apparently been circulating since June 12th about certain quarantined individuals being sighted in public are false: all individuals currently under quarantine have been under 24-hour monitoring and have not left their rooms.
The NEC would like to remind the public that the health and safety of everyone remains a priority, and therefore quarantine rules and regulations are being strictly enforced and followed at all times.
All quarantined individuals have remained in compliance with every established rules and regulations:
- All individuals are restricted to their rooms, which include balconies;
- No individual may receive any visitors, and can only communicate with their families by phone;
- All quarantined individuals can receive additional supplies from their families, but only through the Red Cross office. No items can be taken out of quarantine sites, except for waste that is subject to strict infection control procedures;
- No quarantined individual has any physical contact with hotel workers, security personnel, or health care providers, except as necessary (i.e., testing, health monitoring), in which case the health care worker will be in appropriate personal protective gear.
The NEC also reminds the public that starting or spreading rumors concerning specific individuals or businesses that may have been visited by certain individuals could constitute defamation and entitle the offended party to monetary damages under the law. This includes posting rumors on social media and applies to members of the community outside of Palau who are subject to the defamation laws of their respective locations.
Furthermore, the NEC advises the public that false rumors are aimed to instill fear and harm people and businesses. It is in the best interest of the public to not share or pass along rumors without contacting the NEC Liaison Officer for confirmation on rumors, news, and social media postings.
Once again, we thank the community for its cooperation and appeal to everyone to continue showing kindness and solidarity.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact NEC Liaison Officer Ms. Ritter Udui at 775-0084 or MOH EOC Deputy Incident Commander Mr. Gaafar Uherbelau at 775-1310. For general information on COVID-19, contact the MOH Hotline at 488-0555.