Jamaica Government Extends Curfews, Other COVID-19 Measures 

Andrew Holness

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Jul 31, CMC – The Jamaica government has extended until September 30, all the COVID-19 measures within the Disaster Risk Management Act that also allows for a curfew that begins on Friday night.

The current measures were due to expire on Friday and Prime Minister Andrew Holness said “as we seek to extend the measures, we emphasize that we will continue to take a risk-based management approach, which I have always said is evidence-based, proportionate, and situationally appropriate.

“The objective continues to be the need to reduce the exposure risk of the population to COVID-19 while increasing the capacity of the public health system to respond to cases within the population, to reduce disease spread,” he added.

Jamaica has recorded so far 824 cases and 10 deaths of the virus that was first detected in China last December and linked to 17.3 million infections and 674,000 deaths worldwide.

The government said that under the Act, summer camps will continue to operate only during the hours from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm until August 31, under strict protocols while the  night to early morning curfews will continue in place starting 11.00 pm on July 31, to 5.00 am (local time) on August 1,  day to day until 5 am on the morning of September 30.

It said rules relating to the travel time for drivers of public passenger vehicles one hour before and after the curfews remain the same and that gatherings must not exceed 20 persons. The social distance of six feet must be maintained.

The authorities said that persons 75 years and older must remain at home and only leave home to pursue the necessities of life, while the operating hours of markets and vending will continue from Mondays to Saturdays from 6.00 am to 7.00 pm and closed on Sundays.

The authorities said that the number of persons at a small outdoor events must not exceed, whichever is the lower of 280 persons, with no more than 250 being patrons and no more than 30 being performers or event staff.

Places of amusement, beaches, rivers, river rafting, restaurants, and cinemas will remain open with strict protocols and visits to zoos, parks, water parks, will be within a six hour window.

The government said that persons seeking to enter Jamaica as visitors must complete the application for entry through the official website and “if the person is ordinarily resident in Jamaica, they must complete the application for entry through the website”.

Prime Minister Holness said that the administrative reopening of schools will be on September 7, followed by the phased reopening a week later.

He has also stressed the importance of wearing masks in public places and keeping a social distance of six feet apart, as part of the new normal. – CMC