Prime Minister Andrew Holness has announced several changes to COVID-19 restrictions aimed at stemming the increase in positive cases of the virus. Beginning today (September 8) the nightly islandwide curfew will be from 8pm to 5am the following day. The new measures will end September 23, 2020, when further amended measures will be announced.
In addition to tightening the curfew hours;
- Gatherings have been reduced from 20 to 15 persons.
- For any such gatherings, social distance of the minimum 6ft must be maintained.
- Churches are prohibited from hosting funeral services, conventions and other special events.
- Burials may continue, with no more than 15 persons at the graveside, including the clergy and the funeral home personnel.
- Worship services may continue within the existing guidelines, requiring temperature checks, sanitization and the mandatory wearing of masks during services.
- Employers are encouraged to allow employees to work from home where possible.
- Persons 70 years and older are required to work from home and otherwise, must stay home. They are however permitted to leave home once per day for medical care, food, exercise and other essentials of life.
- Taxi operators should now carry one person less than the maximum number of persons allowed to be carried under the relevant licence, from September 8 – 22.
In the meantime, Prime Minister Andrew Holness said with the pandemic now at the community transmission stage, it is difficult to trace the source of the infection to any particular person.
To that end, the Prime Minister called on all Jamaicans to take personal responsibility even as the Government implements measures to address the pandemic in Jamaica.
“To effectively flatten the curve, it will take some time to have that done but it will work, however it will work faster if every single Jamaican practices the protocols that we have put in place and every single Jamaican takes personal responsibility for their safety,” said Prime Minister Holness.