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Staying home saves lives: Cayman Islands goes on partial lockdown

Staying home saves lives: Cayman Islands goes on partial lockdown
Staying home saves lives: Cayman Islands goes on partial lockdown

The Cayman Islands will be under a partial lockdown as from 7:00 pm tonight. “Staying home saves lives” is Government’s message.

Sounding a note of grave caution on Tuesday, 24 March 2020, Cayman Islands’ leaders, headed by His Excellency the Governor, Mr. Martyn Roper and the Premier, Hon. Alden McLaughlin, said the nation is now under an essential partial lockdown, following a potential case of community spread of the COVID-19 virus that was reported this morning.

Dr. John Lee said:

• 14 additional cases have tested negative.

• Results are expected from the CARPHA laboratory today.

• Total confirmed cases is now 6, including 1 death

• The new test case is from a patient at the HSA

Medical Officer of Health Dr. Samuel Williams-Rodriguez and HSA CEO Lizzette Yearwood said:

• Additionally, eight family members of the patient and 14 staff members of HSA may have had contact with the person who tested positive at HSA and are in home isolation. The patient is still currently non-symptomatic for COVID-19.

• The person has no travel history.

The Premier announced that Government has been overwhelmed by requests for “Shelter in Place” exemptions and it would be pointless for Government to proceed if all these orders were granted that we’ve received requests for. Everyone is concerned about the economic consequences of the order that we are about to make – Government are too, but the economic consequences can never, I repeat can never be more important than lives.

The curfew will proceed tonight:

• Curfew is in place from 7 pm until 5 am daily for next 10 days. The RCIPS will monitor streets for curfew violators who will be arrested.

• From tomorrow (Wednesday, 25 March) Government will confirm all non-essential businesses that will be closed and all non-essential workers should stay home.

The following companies are entities whose employees may be required to work during the curfew and will be exempted. They should have Company ID and a letter from the Company confirming the need for them to work during hours of curfew.

• All emergency and essential services including the Police and Security Services, 911, Fire Service, Prison Service, Custom and Border Control, Department of Environmental Health and Island Waste Carriers.

• Emergency medical including HSA, Health City, Doctors Hospital, Ambulance Services and all Doctors’ Offices.

• Supermarkets, namely Fosters, Hurley’s, Kirk’s, Kirk Market in Cayman Brac, Billy’s Supermarket, Tibmart Co. Ltd, Cost U Less, Priced Right, Progressive Distributors, Cayisle Enterprises Ltd, Cayman Distributors Group, Jacques Scott Group, Blackbeard’s, Uncle Clems Distributors, Heston Ltd, Maedac Supply Ltd, MacRuss Superstore, Chisholms Supermarket

• All retail banks

• Utilities and Infrastructure namely Port Authority, Water Authority, Cayman Water Company, CUC, Sol Petroleum Cayman Ltd, Rubis Cayman Islands Ltd, Homegas Ltd, Ofreg, Cayman Brac Power and Light, Clean Gas, Refuel Ltd, Flow, Digicel, Logic and C3

The Governor said:

• Government is encouraging the vast majority of workers in Cayman’s workplace to stay at home.

• Civil Service has shut down large parts of its operations and those allowed to work from home to comply with Government required actions.

• There is no evidence whatsoever of one or two law firms personnel having contracted COVID-19; that is fake news.

• The emergency travel hotline for those needing to travel for emergency or compassionate reasons is 244-3333.

Minister of Health, Hon. Dwayne Seymour said:

• Ten days of curfew are vitally needed to shorten the possibility of being crippled by the spread of COVID-19 locally.

Commissioner of Police Derek Byrne said:

• With the order received from the Governor for the curfew, Police will enforce it over the 10 nights following.

• Police will use common sense and use fairness but there will be strict application of the order for curfew.

• Persons stopped will have their names and addresses taken with a view to prosecutions to proceed.

• While Police will take a common sense approach, the curfew is also not a free pass for persons to go pick up from work someone considered essential.