Under the new SR&O No. 38 of 2020 published on August 7, Government has introduced new regulations effective August 8 through Saturday, August 29, 2020. The new regulations are part of the process of gradually relaxing restrictions and reintroducing the Federation to more economic and social activity in preparation for the eventual reopening of its borders.
- Saturdays through Sundays, nightly curfews have been extended by two hours, 2:00 a.m. to 4:59 a.m.
- Hotels, Private Early Childhood Education Centers and Sport Management Teams or Clubs may apply for approval to reopen during a first phase reopening period in compliance with established standards and protocols outlined in Schedule III with specifics detailed in Regulation 19.
The borders of St. Kitts & Nevis remain closed to both air and sea commercial traffic. The following travel requirements have been established:
- All incoming passengers must provide a negative RT-PCR test result to the Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Hazel Laws at email@example.com,72 hours prior to arriving in St. Kitts & Nevis.
- All incoming passengers must quarantine for a minimum period of 14 days. On the 14th day, they must take another RT-PCR test; once a negative test result is received, they will be released from quarantine.
- All incoming passengers must comply with established Regulations under the current SR&O.
Further, in preparation for the reopening of the borders:
- The St. Kitts Tourism Authority and the Nevis Tourism Authority have commenced “Travel Approved” Training for the tourism industry. “The Travel Approved” training covers the required health and safety protocols for all sectors within the industry.
- Hotels must apply to the Ministry of Tourism for a certificate of compliance, from the St. Kitts Tourism Authority or the Nevis Tourism Authority that training has been completed
- Hotels and Businesses meeting the established standards will receive a “Travel Approved” certification and seal.
- Improvements to the RLB International Airport that will include minimizing interaction with immigration and customs officers.
What constitutes a “public space” in which the wearing of masks is required, has been specifically defined. Exemptions for not wearing a mask in a “public space” are outlined below:
- If the person is under the age of three years old
- If the person suffers with a disability, cognitive impairment, dementia, asthma, chronic obstructive lung disease or other similar health condition
- If the person is within a private space including in a private vehicle
Individuals who do not comply with mask wearing and other regulations are subject to receive a fixed penalty notice of EC $500 by the police. Those who refuse the ticket or do not pay the penalty within 10 days of receiving it will be summoned to court and will be liable to a fine of up to EC $5,000 or a term of up to 6 months’ imprisonment. The continuing relaxation of restrictions is being implemented at the recommendations of the Chief Medical Officer, the Medical Chief of Staff and medical experts. At their advice, the Federation has successfully flattened the curve. Established protocols including social distancing, handwashing and mask-wearing remain in place. As of Saturday, August 8, there have been a total of 17 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 in the Federation with 0 deaths to date. A total of 1,168 persons have been sampled and tested for COVID-19, with 1151 persons having tested negative and 0 test results pending. 36 persons are currently quarantined in a government facility and 1 person is in isolation and recovering. A total of 1,155 persons have been released from quarantine. St. Kitts & Nevis has one of the highest testing rates in CARICOM and the Eastern Caribbean and uses only the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test which is the gold standard of testing. To read the Emergency Powers (COVID-19) Regulations as part of the Government’s response to contain and control the spread of the COVID-19 virus, visit https://zizonline.com/saint-christopher-and-nevis-statutory-rules-and-orders-no-38-of-2020-emergency-powers-covid-19-no-13-regulations/. The Government continues to act under the counsel of its medical experts, who advised that St. Kitts & Nevis has met the 6 criteria established by the World Health Organization (WHO) for doing so and that all persons who need to be tested have been tested at this time. At this time, we hope everyone and their families remain safe and healthy.