His Excellency the Governor, Mr. Augustus J.U. Jaspert has announced new measures that the Government of the Virgin Islands will be undertaking to continue to prevent and mitigate the effects of COVID-19.
During an update to the public on Cabinet Decisions on March 31, Governor Jaspert said that there will be a transition from the 24 hour shutdown of the Territory to a 14 day limited and managed curfew being imposed from 6:01 a.m. on Thursday, April 2 until 6:00 p.m. on Thursday April 16 under the Curfew Act, 2017.
Under the same Act, an absolute curfew will be imposed from 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. that will make it mandatory for everyone to be in their homes during this period.
The Governor said “We have sought a solution which not only protects our people but will allow people to undertake essential business.” He added, “These new measures will allow all residents limited access during the day to places where they can meet their basic needs.”
Governor Jaspert stated that the new limited and managed curfew will be subject to conditions which include:
- Limited basic and essential services which include pharmacies, supermarkets, banks, gas stations, private medical facilities, fisherfolks, farmers and a limited list of approved wholesale distributors that will be allowed to operate while being encouraged to offer on-line shopping for curbside and home delivery;
- Adhering to protocols for social distancing and the implementation of sanitisation measures for businesses that are allowed to operate during this period;
- No one under mandatory quarantine being allowed to leave his or her home during this period and implementing measures as to how they would receive essential supplies; and
- Those persons in the vulnerable categories also remaining at home and receiving their essential and basic supplies through home deliveries.
The Governor stated, “The introduction of a daytime managed curfew does not in any way mean we are out of the woods. Life will not be turning back to normal yet, and you will be expected to remain at home, unless you are venturing out for essential business or unless you are an essential worker on the way to or from your place of work.”
Further updates on the agreed approach by Cabinet on the staggering of access to shops and services will be communicated to the public.