Bars generally complying with guidelines — McKenzie

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Bars generally complying with guidelines — McKenzie

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Desmond McKenzie, says since the reopening of bars, the Government has observed a positive response to COVID-19 guidelines and safety protocols.

Bars were allowed to reopen on May 19 given that they maintained strict social distancing practices outlined by the Government.

Speaking at a COVID-19 press briefing this evening, McKenzie said more than 2,500 bars have been inspected so far.

“We are seeing where the general acceptance of the guidelines that have been laid out have been met. We have seen where, especially in the corporate area, there's a very high percentage of compliance with operators taking the necessary steps to ensure [for example that] there are no stools, benches, chairs or tables,” he said.

The minister pointed out that there is also a high percentage of compliance with curfew hours.

However, Mckenzie expressed disappointment with compliance to gaming and social distancing protocols. In this area, he said the ministry observed only 30 per cent compliance by bars.

Meanwhile, the minister said the inspection has revealed that a significant number of these bars are operating without the required permits. He, however, noted that a protocol is being worked out between his ministry and the Ministry of Justice to ensure that the Government works with these operators to comply fully.

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