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New policies implemented including election night curfew following COVID-19 surge

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Posted: Monday, October 26, 2020. 6:35 pm CST.

By BBN Staff: Today,  the  National Oversight Committee (NOC) met for its weekly consideration of Belize’s COVID-19 situation.

The NOC took special note of Director of Health Services (DHS) Marvin Manzanero’s report of October 26, 2020 and was concerned at the 332 new cases occurring over the past week.

Even more alarming was the fact of six more deaths, including the first pediatric fatality.  

The NOC noted that it will fast track private sector rapid testing, with an accompanying protocol for the contact tracing that would need to occur with private sector detection of positive cases. 

“The NOC believes that Belize is experiencing a COVID-19 surge, with the likelihood of this being heightened because of the General Elections on November 11th. The NOC therefore stresses, in the middle of public reports about continued lax behaviour and violation of the safety protocols mandated by law, that it is now more critical than ever that Belizeans adhere to the legal and protective guardrails: physical distancing; hand washing and mask-wearing; no gatherings of more than 10 persons; and a ban on all non-family, close quarters interactions,” the statement urged.

In addition, the NOC turned down all requests made for the relaxation of the restrictions pertaining to clubs, bars, casinos, and street vending.

The NOC did, however, approve the protocols presented by the National Fitness Association (NAC) for the reopening of gyms.

Again because of the current surge, the NOC decided that notwithstanding the meticulous and commendable work of the NAC proposal, the approved resumption of operations by gyms and fitness centers would now take place on November 30th instead of the requested date of October 30th. 

Election night curfew will begin at 8pm and end on 5 a.m. the following day.

 

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