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NOT happy Massage parlours, spas seek urgent govt help

Representatives from the Union of Thai Traditional Medicine Society have asked for the government’s help, including to allow spas and massage parlours to reopen.

Sukasom Amratisha, chairman of the society, said 12,000 spas and around 200,000 spa and massage staff have been affected by the closure of spas and massage venues according to government orders. At least 4,000 of the businesses have shut down.

The group asked the government to allow foot massages and body massages whereby the rubbing of the upper part of the body, especially the face, can be omitted.

The group also asked for certified and registered spas to be able to use their certification as loan surety for soft loans supported by the government or financial institutions.

The group also asked the government to allow spas and massage parlours to participate in the “Kon La Khreung” co-payment scheme. Another measure is mediating a rent waiver or discount during forced closures.

Separately, director-general of the Health Service Support Department Thares Krassanairawiwong said the department is proposing a waiver for their annual operating fee for a total of two years to help reduce the pandemic’s impact on spa businesses.

He said the department early last year granted a one-year operational fee waiver to over 10,000 spas and massage parlours affected by the pandemic.

After they were allowed to reopen in mid-2020, only 4,000 were able to resume business, the doctor said.

Rattanachai Suttidechanai, chairman of the Pattaya business and tourism association, yesterday urged Chon Buri provincial authorities to use 12 state quarantine facilities as isolation venues for high-risk groups.

He also suggested the government help shoulder the costs if the proposal is effective in curbing the spread of the virus.

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