New emergency directive in place For Barbados

A new emergency management directive will be in effect from Sunday March 28 through April 11, 2021, with an extra hour in the morning and special conditions will apply to the Easter public holidays.

Directive No. 7 was issued by the Government of Barbados early Saturday morning and most of the existing conditions previously announced in the phased reopening – including the wearing of masks in public – remain in effect. However, the curfew, which starts at 9 p.m. now ends one hour earlier at 5 a.m.

Sundays remain closed to commercial activity and no one is to be out and about unless they are performing an essential service or have an emergency. The Sundays in the period are March 28, April 4 and April 11, but on Good Friday (April 2) and Easter Monday (April 5) no one is permitted to leave home between 5 a.m. and 9 p.m.

The exception once again applies to those who may be operating or working in a business, is transacting business, going to a place of worship, going to the beach or park to exercise, is taking part in the COVID-19 vaccination process or has an emergency.

Businesses given the green light remain open from Monday through Saturday and must close by 6 p.m. However, bars, gyms, dance and yoga studios, dojos and night clubs remain closed. Pleasure craft and private boat charters are prohibited. Similarly, picnics, parties, banquets, bus crawls, limes and karaoke are also not allowed.

During the Easter Weekend, the exceptions on Sundays are bakeries for the baking of bread only between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m., cleaning services, farms from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., gas stations for the sale of fuel and top ups between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m., as well as fuel distributors, hotels and accommodation, pharmacies and tyre repair shops. The sugar factories can operate for the entire day.

Churches must maintain six feet for worship, with no more than 75 in-house and 25 for funerals. Weddings are permitted up to 20 guests.

Non-contact sports are allowed with the exception of squash and table tennis and no team sports are permitted.

Fast food restaurants can operate between Monday and Saturday for drive-thru or pick-up only. In-house dining can continue at restaurants, but with bars closed, alcoholic beverages can only be served with food. Physical distancing is be maintained in these places.

The beaches are open for exercise from 6 to 9 a.m. and again from 3 to 6 p.m. and parks from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., but “no more than 2 persons shall exercise together, in which case there shall be a physical distance of at least 6 feet between them, unless they are members of the same household”.

The documents also reminds members of the public: “Any person who contravenes this Directive or fails to comply with any condition specified by the Chief Medical Officer or the Unit is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of $50 000 or to imprisonment for a term of one year or to both . . .”.

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