Prime Minister Andrew Holness has announced an extension of all COVID-19 measures under the Disaster Risk Management Act until November 2020.
Some of the measures have been extended to November 16 while others were extended to November 30, 2020.
Speaking yesterday at a media briefing to update the nation, Prime Minister Holness acknowledged the issue of COVID-19 fatigue and asserted that it is no excuse for disobeying the law and disrespecting law enforcement officers.
“We told the security forces to maintain the Orders and increase their presence. There are other ways of dealing with the stress of coping with these restrictions and managing the pandemic. As a Government, we will never countenance any action that results in the breaking of the law threatening the lives of our law enforcement officers and first responders,” said Prime Minister Holness.
The extended measures are as follows:
- The islandwide curfew will remain at 9:00 PM to 5:00 AM daily until November 16, 2020.
- Persons 65 and over must continue to stay at home but will be allowed to leave home once each day for the necessities of life until November 30, 2020.
- The limit for public gatherings remains at 15 persons.
- Public passenger motor cars will be limited, to one person less than the number of persons allowed until November 16, 2020.
- Drivers of public passenger vehicles will be given one hour before and after the curfew to leave their home and get to the destination of their first passenger and after dropping off their last passenger to go home.
- The ban on funerals, parties, and other events will continue burials will continue to be allowed with strict observation and enforcement of the 15-person rule until November 30, 2020.
- Churches, hospitals, and nursing homes will continue to operate under the same protocols.
- The current protocols under the controlled re-entry programme for both residents and visitors remain until November 16, 2020, while the requirements for pretesting and quarantine remain the same.
- All businesses are encouraged to facilitate their employees working from home if they can do so.
The measures for the communities of Rae Town in Kingston and Cornwall Courts in St. James under special curfew orders have been extended until November 6, 2020.
- The curfew will continue from 6:00 PM to 5:00 AM, and during curfew hours, only essential workers with identification will be allowed to enter or exit.
- The gathering limit will be no more than six (6) persons in any public place for the period.
- All the other existing restrictions such as wearing masks and physical distancing will be strictly enforced.
12 schools will be at the primary level and 5 at the secondary level in the parishes of Clarendon, Manchester, Portland, St. Ann, St. Elizabeth, St. James, Westmoreland, St. Thomas and Trelawny.
“During the first few days the Ministry will be working with the schools and parents to ensure that the parents and students have the necessary information to prepare for the face to face opening come November 9,” said Minister Williams.
During that time, the Ministry will do an assessment, to determine how well the pilot is working and assess are other emerging issues that may need to be considered to make future decisions.