Good intentions, but hell of a reality

Letters to the Editor

Good intentions, but hell of a reality

Friday, May 15, 2020

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Dear Editor,

On Wednesday, May 13, 2020 I had an intimate experience with the adage, “The way to hell is paved with good intentions.”

Given that my surname fell among those who should collect their Government COVID-19 Allocation of Resources for Employees (CARE) Compassionate Grants on that day, I made my way to Pavilion mall. I arrived at 7:00 am and saw about 25 to 30 people in the car park.

A few minutes later came the announcement that the CARE Programme disbursement would no longer be done there, so we should all go to the stadium car park.

At roughly 7:30 am I joined a line outside the National Arena which was earmarked for senior citizens, pregnant women, and the disabled. Just shy of two hours later came the first sign of movement as we were told workers had arrived. At this time the line extended to the car park as no one had even passed the gate to enter the area outside the National Arena.

Things continued for hours at a snail's pace, with those charged with assisting us adding to our frustration and confusion as they seemingly knew little themselves. Finally, at 12.25 we made it through the gate.

Again, confusion reigned as soldiers and security guards attempted to establish social distance among us, turning us first one way then the next.

Finally, at 12.45 pm, after five hours in the unrelenting sun and now enervated, nauseous, and bowed I had had enough. And with roughly 60 people ahead of me, outside, and at least twice that amount seated inside, I departed.

All this time the smiling image of Minister Olivia “Babsy” Grange, who assured us on television that the arena would be set up for seniors, pregnant women, and the disabled was riveted in my mind. Try telling that to the four individuals I witnessed who fainted in the blazing sun. Or the one-legged man who stood on crutches yards away from me in the line.

Sean Montgomery


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