With Belize reaching the 31-day milestone in this COVID fight, some restrictions were scaled back and local tourism is about to go in full swing. As the Prime Minister indicated in his press brief these relaxations still come with restrictions including the continuation of the curfew.
Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize: “I implore our people not to see this as carte blanche for reckless or heedless behavior. So now to the changes that are being made to the SI currently in force. Last week I referred to the fact that the BTB had approached us about a domestic tourism push. Hotels had already been reopened but questions had arisen about two things; use of hotel pools and beaches and use of hotel restaurants. The National Oversight Committee supported by Cabinet has now decided that use of pools, use of the sea or rivers in the case of inland resorts is to be permitted. As always this is subject to social distancing. Regarding hotel restaurants the last position was that they could only offer room service or take out food, the new arrangements will permit eating at the restaurants so long as those restaurants have outdoor seating facilities.”
Hon. Michael Peyrefitte, Attorney General & Minister of National Security: “If you run a restaurant that’s outdoors, I don’t know if you can think about a purely outdoor restaurant in the country but if you have an open air outdoor restaurant in the country you can now open for people to sit in that restaurant however no more than 10 people per table and each table must be six feet apart. Six feet or one Peyrefitte as the big tune said. But I repeat if ten people noh must eat together then noh ker ten people man, ker four or five. Use your head, be sensible. Not because you can do something you do it. So if six of you can go or five of you can go that is the best thing to do. So if you’re an open air restaurant people can only go by reservations only as well no walk ins. You make your reservation, you manage your crowd and then you make sure that no more than ten persons per table and you make sure that those tables are six feet apart.”
Another ease comes by way of exercising on public thoroughfares. Here again, are the Prime Minister and the Attorney General.
Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize: “Our Dr.Manza as some of you know is quite the jogger so he certainly sympathized with his fellow aficionados that complained about the difficulties of face mask running. The medical literature bears out the thesis that the masks are not necessary for outdoor exercising. Accordingly that requirement has been shelved and so the keep fit people can now literally breathe easier.”
Hon. Michael Peyrefitte, Attorney General & Minister of National Security: “Now let me warn people don’t get cute you know because they will lock you up. Don’t walk down the street without a mask and when the police man pull up you say “well I was jogging. I was jogging officer I was running so I don’t need no mask.” you’re going to jail Clearly you can see whether or not a person is exercising or they’re just doing fool so don’t think that you will walk without a mask, the police men come you start to run and holler you were jogging or walk for exercise; that will not work you’re going to jail. So please understand that it is only if you’re genuinely exercising, walking, jogging, running in the morning you’re allowed to not have on the mask for the purposes of breathing. We believe that the activity we have come to a place where we don’t need to have the mask when you’re doing those stuff.”
The reopening of churches is also on the list of ease of restrictions with a view to revisiting in the coming weeks.
Rt. Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize: “Churches can now hold services at their physical facilities though subject to the ten person limit. Depending on our continued anti corona progress we should raise that threshold within the next couple of weeks.”
As we keep mentioning, restrictions are still in place. Here is the Attorney General to lend clarity to those regulations.
Hon. Michael Peyrefitte, Attorney General & Minister of National Security: “The spa thing still closed. Sorry ladies the waxing ,well not only ladies because you have some men who wax too you know. Ladies, gentlemen no waxing, no massage, no facial none of that as yet. The rules as it pertains to beauty salons and barbershops they remain the same.”
Dorian Pakeman, Government Press Office: “So it’s head, nails, toes.”
Hon. Michael Peyrefitte, Attorney General & Minister of National Security: “Yeah head, nails, toes, the essentials. Daycare centers, childcare centers, nurseries and other similar establishment or businesses closed. Discotheques, bars, rum shops, night clubs closed. Gymnasiums, sporting complexes remain closed. There’s been a push for gymnasiums but the National Oversight Committee said it’s best for gyms to remain closed. Casinos and gambling establishments are closed. Still no Boledo.”