Cabinet announces sweeping changes to COVID policy; end of state emergency

Prime Minister Gaston Browne (photo contributed)
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The end of an almost two-year-long State of Emergency (SoE) is just one of the many changes announced by Cabinet this morning.

The SoE which was instituted in March 2020 will end before December 27th 2021.

The Cabinet has also agreed to allow both vaccinated and unvaccinated public sector workers to return to work on December 1st 2021.

“Those who are still not vaccinated by December 1st 2021 will be subject to a COVID-19 test every two weeks. There will be no charges for these tests,” it said.

Banks and other financial institutions that have achieved community immunity of 80% will also be permitted to have testing of their un-vaccinated employees, beginning December 1st 2021.

Private sector entities are now being allowed to issue their own exemption certificates on the grounds of religion and or medical reasons.

“The government sector will continue to require exemptions from acceptable medical practitioners and reputable religious institutions following submission of the appropriate application.”

Meanwhile, competitive sports can resume from Monday November 22, using the previously agreed-upon protocols.  

The restrictions imposed on people travelling from high COVID infected countries such as the Dominican Republic, Brazil, India, and South Africa will also be lifted on January 1st 2022.

These changes are in addition to a change that allows all students over the age of 12, whether vaccinated or not, to resume face-to-face classes in January 2022.

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