Government employees to work from home and within office bubbles


Permanent Secretaries have been charged with implementing measures that will minimize the risk of COVID-19 infection among workers in the various government offices and departments.

As such, the administrative heads of government ministries have been tasked by Cabinet to work out practical modalities for human resource deployment between those who can and should be made to work from home.

But even among staff who continue to function from the workplace, there will also be a strong focus on keeping personnel from different units, as separate and isolated as possible from other sections.

This was announced on Wednesday evening by Information Minister Melford Nicholas during the weekly post-Cabinet press briefing. He said the Permanent Secretaries would be briefed by the Cabinet Secretary and the Establishment Division.

“We are going to ask Permanent Secretaries to revert to a position where we can reduce some of the numbers within government offices to the point where we may be able to put persons on rotation. This obviously will be done in consultation with their Minister. But in all instances we want to ensure that even within ministries, and even where people return to work, or are allowed to come to work … to work in clusters, to work in your own bubbles.

“So if you’re in the marketing [department] stay in marketing and do not commingle; such that if there is an infected person – or if it is brought to attention that a person in the marketing department is infected – we would not be worried about the accounts or production departments.”

After confirming that the Jolly Beach Resort has been commissioned as a State quarantine facility, Nicholas said all returning nationals would be fitted with the recently acquired electronic tracking bracelets, regardless of whether they are quarantining at home or at a public quarantine center such as Jolly Beach or other designated facility.

He took the opportunity to clarify that the national isolation facility would be housed at the former US Air Force compound.

“I also want to indicate that there are thirty-two rooms that have been repaired and restored in that facility [which] the Ministry of Health has indicated [will be used] as an   isolation facility.”

People are placed in quarantine for fourteen days when their infection status is unknown and test results are being awaited, as this is the time window within which symptoms of infection manifest or can be detected. Once infection is confirmed by testing, and the persons affected do not require hospitalization or critical care, they are then transferred to isolation until recovery or other case termination.

“We are [also] seeking to utilize the Halcyon Cove Resort, given that they are not going to put that back on the market just now, to use that as an isolation facility as well,” Nicholas said.

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  1. Because the government fails to do what’s necessary – turn off the spigot of incoming diseased folks.

    Lockdown the island. Close all borders to both private and commercial planes and boats.

    Treat the sick. Prophylaxis for the population.

    And then reopen with real protocols that apply to EVERYONE.

    • Yes a full lockdown will stop all the new imported cases. But what happens when you open again, the cases start coming back and by then you done kill thousands a people from starvation and break the economy. You think we have the ability to take out from the federal reserve like our big brother?

      • Best you not bother. This person will not understand. He/she seems to think that lockdown is the answer but it is the opposite. The whole world tried this lockdown thing and yet the virus is still here and seems to not be going anywhere.

  2. Ha!! and how will you get paid? What commerce will happen? How will you eat?

    Let me hear you say “Lockdown the island. I forfeit a salary during lockdown. Close all borders to both private and commercial planes and boats.”

    • That is indeed the million dollar question. They crying for lockdown are they prepared for the economic ramifications that will come with it.

      • Wait u nah hab work fu do. Just up and down pan ya stright?? Morning noon and night ebrby post ya dey. Ya finger nah tired. No man u cant normal. The pay must be really good. Best me led me job and become one paid political troll seems to be easy living.

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