STATEMENT BY PERMIER AND MINISTER OF FINANCE
HONOURABLE ANDREW A. FAHIE
Good day and God’s Blessings to the people of the Virgin Islands.
I do trust that all of you are remaining safe as we navigate the ‘New Regular’ as we live and work with COVID-19.
I continue to encourage all of us to social distance. We must respect each other by standing six feet apart.
Let us continue to sanitise or wash our hands before entering establishments. This is important as we continue to keep each other safe.
It is important that we continue to wear our masks. We must do this to keep each other safe and healthy.
We owe it to each other to ensure safe practices to keep us all alive and healthy.
Remember the world is still exposed to COVID-19, and we cannot become complacent.
As we continue to welcome our people home, it is important that we ‘stay woke’ and remain vigilant.
We continue to meet regularly as a Cabinet to discuss matters that are important to the success of this economy.
Today, 8 July, Cabinet of the Virgin Islands met and made the following decisions:
- Due to the need for additional rooms for Government quarantine purposes to accommodate detainees in Immigration custody, the contract period previously approved for the occupancy of Paradise Suites Hotel be extended by two (2) weeks covering the period, 1 April to 15 July, 2020.
- That the Ministry of Health and Social Development instruct the Attorney General to consider all relevant legislation, including the COVID-19 Control and Suppression (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 2020 for the purpose of enacting provisions to adhere to the social distancing measures, which include, but are not limited to:
- the wearing of face masks/coverings by all individuals when in an indoor or outdoor public space;
- the maintaining six (6) feet of physical distance between individuals when in an indoor or outdoor space;
- all businesses must ensure that employees and visitors (customers) wear face masks/coverings and adhere to all social distancing measures approved by the Government of the Virgin Islands; and
- introduce a range of penalties for individuals and businesses that violate the above listed measures, which may include the following:
- First offence - Warning
- Second offence – Fine and education/training
- Each subsequent offence – Fine
- Failure to pay a fine will incur a further penalty
- First offence – Warning
- Second offence – Fine, Notice of Closure, subject to re-inspection and education/training
- Third offence – Revocation of Environmental Health Certificate, closure and a further penalty.
We will continue to meet as a Cabinet to move this Territory forward in the best interest and benefit of the people of the Virgin Islands.
As a people let us continue to go forward with vigilance in the midst of COVID-19, and as we do, let us remember that an active Atlantic Hurricane season has been predicted. We must remain in a state of readiness.
I can assure you the people that your Government will continue to do its part to ‘Be Ready’ for the Atlantic Hurricane Season.
I continue to be immensely grateful for the continued support of many teams in the Ministries, departments, and statutory bodies of Government that continue to work together to ensure preparedness.
I am also encouraging and reminding the private sector that they too must remain in a heightened state of preparedness.
I encourage everyone to continue updating preparedness plans and procedures to mitigate hazards that we may encounter, including tropical storms or hurricanes.
As a Territory let us continue to work together as one, with BVILOVE to keep COVID-19 at bay. Let us continue to reboot, re-energise, and reawaken our economy. And, let us remain ‘ready and steady’ in this 2020 Atlantic Hurricane Season.
I thank you for your continued support and commitment.
May God bless you.