Cayman locks down in face of COVID-19

| 13/03/2020 | 212 Comments
Cayman News Service
Chief Medical Officer Dr John Lee at the press briefing

(CNS): Government has revealed a range of strict measures, including banning gatherings of more than 50 people, stopping all cruise ship calls and closing all education institutions, in an effort to try to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, within the community. Government has also extended the travel ban, which now includes the European Union. But Jamaica, the United States and the UK could be added to the list.

Speaking at a press briefing on Friday afternoon, Premier Alden McLaughlin said the public gathering ban does not apply to businesses. But he said employers, including the government, are being encouraged to create work shifts if staff, for whatever reason, cannot work from home. The goal is to reduce the number of workers in any company being at the workplace at the same time.

The ban on gatherings of more than 50 people, which applies until further notice, applies to restaurants, bars, social meetings and churches. It does not apply to supermarkets, pharmacies or hospitals. The aim, the premier explained, is to limit the density of people together in one place, which will reduce the transmission rate.

Meanwhile, all schools, colleges and educational institutions, both private and public, will be closed from Monday until 27 April. All cruise ships will also be banned from Monday for sixty days, as the country goes into lockdown as it tries to contain the spread of COVID-19. McLaughlin said the travel ban is limited at the moment to countries with significant cases, such as Iran, Japan and Korea and the EU because Cayman has no trade considerations with these countries.

Travel bans on the UK, the US and Jamaica present more of a challenge because these are the main countries of trade for Cayman. But the premier said measures could be taken at the airport to restrict travellers from these countries next week.

In the light of the closure of Health City in East End, Chief Medical Officer Dr John Lee explained that other health facilities are unlikely to shut down in the way that hospital has. He explained that the decision to close Health City was made based on a single patient testing positive because at that point there was still the possibility of containment. However, once cases begin emerging in the wider community, as is inevitable, there will be no point closing hospitals.

Dr Lee said Cayman will begin testing and getting immediate results here on Monday or Tuesday, as the equipment has now arrived. But he warned that testing will stop if the virus catches hold across the community because it will then be less relevant. He said that a team from Public Health England will return to Cayman on Monday to help the islands manage the containment and then mitigation measures.

In the meantime, the premier made it clear that government would introduce further radical, or even more draconian, measures to deal with what could be a serious health crisis for Cayman for as long as three months. “We are in completely uncharted territory,” he said, as he urged people to practice social distancing and do what they can to help curtail the potential spread.

Government will be keeping the public informed through its website and social media pages and plans to hold weekday daily press briefings in the short term.

Meanwhile, in addition to government’s official bans and closures, the private sector has also begun closing down, with tour operators cancelling their excursions. Companies, charities and associations are postponing all social events and some companies are creating ways for people to do business on line. The banks are also asking customers with loans to contact them to help manage possible financial difficulties over the coming months.

See the latest Press Briefing on COVID-19 below on CIGTV


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Category: Health, health and safety

Comments (212)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    So many hateful people on this forum. It is really sad. I am just looking for information. Not negativity.

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  2. Anonymous says:

    The Fed just dropped interest rates to .25 percent. I expect no delay for Cayman to drop rates accordingly.

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  3. Anonymous says:

    Will government teachers be paid during the school closures?

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  4. Michelle Shoemaker says:

    PLEASE LISTEN TO ME. I AM IN USA. I WAS JUST IN CAYMAN, GO THERE TWICE A YEAR. I LOVE YOU GUYS. YOUR CMO Dr. Lee, said this on Twitter: “Households in isolation are released when a test is negative. If a test were positive, all the household members get tested and stay at home until they are cleared. ****Please remember, it is very unlikely that someone who has no symptoms is going to be able to pass on coronavirus***”. THIS LAST PART IS A LIE. EXPERTS ARE SAYING THAT PEOPLE CAN SHED THE most VIRUS before THEY ARE SYMPTOMATIC. Please, people need to know the truth. Not just be told stuff to keep them calm.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Why listen to you because you are in the USA. The only REAL data point is deaths by COVID vs Population; and then probability by age and health.

      You cannot as USA is doing base either mortality or transmission changes on confirmed cases simply because cases are not an absolute number.

      No country has the ability or has come even close to measuring more than 1% of its population. If the did certainly the number of cases would increase but death rate is death rate and would not. Meaning the actual death against cases factor would significantly decrease.

      Ie Thailand Confirmed Tested Deaths 4 from a population of 69m – .000002 %.

      And of that the highest risk are people over the age of 65.

      USA hasn’t even tested 1% of your population in fact less than South Korea.

      Cases do not mean deaths!

  5. Make them pay says:

    I hereby make this declaration.

    I personally hold the Gov’t MLA’s, Senior Gov’t Members and the Cruise Ship responsible for bringing this Virus here and if I contract this Virus it was due to their negligence. I therefore hold these entities personally and financially responsible and liable for any issues caused because of their negligence.

    It will be up to a court of law to decide the case but I WILL BRING IT if it occurs.

    They will have to prove they did not, beyond a doubt……

    When you make bad decisions and attempt to hide the truth you must expect to pay for it…..

    Therefore this case can be made as a class action civil suit for persons effected by these entities poor judgment…..

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    • Anonymous says:

      I understand your anger but you simply don’t understand the legal principles involved in suing the government.

      First, you would have to demonstrate – even once you had established that they were in breach of their duty – that it results in a loss to you, and in this case, one that wouldn’t have occurred anyway. So not just that they mismanaged the crisis, but the results wouldn’t have been the same. Which given the way the virus has spread everywhere and most countries are now going through the same if not greater problems, persuading the court that the outcome would have been any different could be a stretch. Do you really think that if that passenger hadn’t come ashore we wouldn’t have got the virus here anyway?

      Second, you assume the burden of proof is on them and it’s “beyond a doubt”. The burden of proof is on the plaintiff – you would have to demonstrate that to a reasonable level of certainty that they were negligent, that it resulted in foreseeable harm to you, and that the damage wouldn’t have occurred anyway. Good luck.

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      • Make them pay says:

        First. They had a duty of care to protect the people of the Islands.

        They breached that by allowing the person to come on shore. They KNEW they had breached this duty of care BECAUSE THEY ATTEMTED TO HIDE THE INCIDENT.

        The proof that they caused the virus to come here is based on the fact that the Hospital closed and its staff became ill. So far there have NOT been any other REPORTED or UNREPORTED cases. So, correct me IF I am wrong, but it’s because this person was here that we have our first case here, CORRECT?

        And as far as ME PROVING NEGLIGENCE, I dont have to. The virus is here BECAUSE of what THEY DID and THEY KNEW it was wrong because THEY ATTEMPTED TO HIDE THE FACT….

        Yes the virus may have come here anyways but the fact is, so far it has not. THESE ENTITIES brought it here…FACT….

        Put it to a jury……..

        And yes I WILL BRING THE CASE TO COURT………..

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    • Anonymous says:

      We all know you won’t bring any case against the government.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I just want to remind Cayman that Persons from the U.K. were responsible for bringing the virus to the Caribbean in particular Jamaica. We have now put a travel ban on persons from U.K.
      I notice that most European countries and some Asian countries have been banned by your Government. What about the U.K. they are the main culprits and even now they don’t have a good handle on the situation. I think your Government needs to review travel from UK or at least check every persons temperature on landing. Cayman is the only island that is still accepting visitors from the U.K. protect your people!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Every major cruise line has suspended cruises for 2 months so CIG’s decision is irrelevant to the welfare of those employed in the cruise sector here. No one is coming regardless.

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  7. Anonymous says:

    No more people allowed from the eu.
    But the premier forgot to mention this does not apply to private airplanes of wealthy Italians that own property here.
    They fly in from Italy and Spain on a daily basis. No checks , nothing.

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    • Anonymous says:

      BS. All passengers on private flights still have to clear customs and immigration. They may may have to stand in a queue, but they still have to clear.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I wish I had a private plane. Don’t know where I would fly, but as of now, I have 3 weeks off and would love to spend it on a beach! I promise I would stay 6 feet away from everyone.

  8. Anonymous says:

    FYI all cruise ships have cancelled their cruises until further notice ,watch the U.S. news .thanks to our GOVERNMENT .

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  9. Anonymous says:

    Yes lets destroy the economy and make life more difficult for people in cayman(world)?

    For what?

    So we can save some old people which are only alive because our currently modern day medical system. They have had there 60-80+ years on earth, let them go lets make life better for our younger generations.

    Ooo how this is designed so perfectly to clean up the old generations…

    Don’t take it personal, it’s life we are all gonna die. Why should the young struggle and suffer to save the old and pretty much dead already?

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  10. Dose of reality says:

    It’s one thing to make dramatic decisions, it’s another to face the consequences of those decisions I doubt whether Alden and his “advisors” have fully considered this. Heaven help us when we hear about the “more drastic” decisions to come. This affliction is basically harmless to 80% of the population and once they have recovered that’s 80% of the population that are 100% protected. Granted as many as 10 % may suffer fatal consequences but these are people in their 80’s and above who already have serious existing conditions which would likely prove fatal. Closing all our schools, banning all incoming flights, and cruise ships, imposing more “drastic”measure whatever they can be, will make Cayman hell on earth for the people living here. Our economy will be in tatters and many people will go hungry. We should not get carried away, as for most of us Covid -19 is no different to a bad dose of the flu.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Agree.
      Social services should have been mobilized instead to deliver food and groceries to elderly, disabled and those with pre-existing conditions living alone. This group should remain in self-quarantine.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Herd mentality is focused on toilet paper, total isolation from the world and each other and blaming everyone for endangering their lives.

      They can’t see past 2 weeks. And what is coming after such a dramatic decision should frighten $hit out of them.

      In my many comments over the years I have said:
      – reliance on tourism is dangerous, epidemics, terrorist acts and natural events like an earthquake could bring it to standstill in the blink of an eye
      – having no reserves to sustain economy and people in difficult times is dangerous
      – one day the Dump fires could become uncontrollable
      – having no food reserves and agricultural sector is dangerous

      But, in Aug. 2019
      Premier Alden McLaughlin, Agriculture Minister Juliana O’Connor-Connolly and Speaker of the House McKeeva Bush were among the officials visiting the 67th Denbigh Agricultural, Industrial and Food Show in Clarendon.

      Premier McLaughlin said in a press release. “This visit gives us an opportunity to observe firsthand and learn from Jamaica’s technical expertise in agriculture.”
      “This is important as we continue to not only expand our own locally grown agriculture products, but also seek other sources to help diversify Cayman’s access to food supplies.” https://www.caymancompass.com/2019/08/07/cayman-officials-visit-agriculture-and-food-show-in-jamaica/

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      • Anonymous says:

        So how Cayman’s access to food supplies was diversified since Premier and others returned to Cayman ?

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    • Anonymous says:

      The WHO doctor just interviewed in tv disagrees with you. She said about half of the 80% to who you say it is harmless will still develop pneumonia with possible lung scarring. Is that ok with you oh wise one?

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    • Anonymous says:

      11:31 am. One can catch this coronavirus more than once

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  11. Anonymous says:

    May be one of the measures should be to prevent people from Grand Cayman from flying to Cayman Brac and buying our water and supplies. We get one barge per week with supplies and we have to make do with that. It is beyond selfish for these people to be doing this. This week, a van load of people were here going from shop to shop buying up crucial supplies that Brac people need. Have some conscience.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    I saw many people stocking up toilet paper and no food! Are they going to eat the paper? Perhaps they should have bought bottle gravy to soak it in first!!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Or ,use water bottle as Muslims do from last 1400years and clean hand and all nasal and fulll face 5 times day calls(widu}also any other time than prey if they do no1or no 2 they ought to clean fully ,those times as well as.islasm is 50% writing only about cleanings
      And eating’s of Hala only animals ,,even on that time was pre forbidden animals will damage your health.
      Google dr Zakir naik/any topic of ur choice

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  13. Anonymous says:

    I just hope Government functions continue. Just like the currently employed, I need my retirement pension cheque each payday!!

  14. Anonymous says:

    I know of at least one church (7 congregations around the island) which has issued guidance to congregants – including recommendations to stay at home. They added mandatory safety-conscious procedures for various actions, including the gathering of offerings, if people choose to come.

    Sounds pro-active to me.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Chris Johnson, I agree totally with the points you propose. However, greedy merchants will surely not pass-on any waivers they receive from Government. We’ve already heard one merchant say that they can’t guarantee lower prices, due to “supply chains” – already hedging their intentions to price-gouge!!

    Supply chain issues are real, especially in our case of everything being imported, but that can be addressed by rationing and other measures before price-hikes. They would never think to take a small hit to their profits instead to “soaking” the customer!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Ivan was very, very, Very good to a certain lumber baron on the island. Also to some Canadians and Scots that couldn’t make it in their own countries.

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    • Anonymous says:

      It’s quite simple; retailers who price gouge us over the next 3 months or so will be punished via social media once things return to normal. They will be finished in no time.

  16. Anonymous says:

    So many questions! Do all bars and restaurants have to close or only those with capacity above 50? Or can they impose a 49 person limit and keep operating (which seems ridiculous in terms of limiting spread). Are shops allowed to remain open if they usually have fewer than 50 people in them? What about offices with more than 50? I know they are exempt but if a gathering of 50 is too dangerous in Yoshi why isn’t it too dangerous in Maples and Calder? What about Smiths Barcadere? Will there be cops to count the numbers there, or is being outside different (which would make sense I guess). Are hotels going to have to close completely or just close their common areas?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Well, one well-known restaurant didn’t get the memo. I came out of my office last night and there was a huge party going on in their outdoor space and lots of people in the indoor bar and restaurant. Probably more than 100 people total. Just like everything else in Cayman, who is going to enforce this ban. Answer: no one. Who cares if people could be spreading death as long as greedy people are raking in the $$$$$! That’s what Cayman is all about after all.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Maybe you fail to understand that these figures are guidelines? Instead you might be better served by using your own judgement based on wether you think you have a good immune system or have a pre existing health condition that might increase your risk. I wouldn’t think that getting drunk is a good idea as this might put you at greater risk, not to mention impair your judgement. Try and understand the reasoning by which these were derived and think less about the exact figures themselves.

      The operative word is THINK.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Currently drunk: am fine, would strongly recommend.

      • Anonymous says:

        No they are not guidelines. They are now the law. It’s not 50 or whatever number you think is appropriate depending on the circumstances. It’s 50. You have 49 it may not be a great idea but it’s legal. You have 51 and it’s not – whether it’s church or happy hour.

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        • 2+2=free says:

          Problem is, not many people can count properly here. Put this together with what’s been happening here prior to this outbreak and people don’t count here either!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, you would be jailed for 6 months. Meantime McKeeva Bush is still being investigated.

      They can’t arrest and fine you without investigation either.

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    • Anonymous says:

      So a restaurant has staff of 20 on that means 30 paying customers only one option shut.
      Wherever did they get the number of 50 absolutely ridiculous.
      Assume ALTwill just shut as the staff numbers on in the building exceeds 50 and it ain’t no supermarket!

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    • Anonymous says:

      It is the biggest load of drivel ever. Totally un-enforceable. Keep the sheeple scared and you can do what you want to them. Doesn’t work on those of us with an IQ more than our height in inches.

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  17. Anonymous says:

    Cruise ships are not leaving the US for the next 30 days anyway.

    Some will still expect to make the tourist dollars though and still blame CIG for locking the ships out.

    We need Johann and Mario now to rescue us.

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  18. Anonymous says:

    Silly humans with your superiority complex. Youre all mere mortals and this virus is putting you all in your place. Mother Nature is very angry for how you have destroyed everything in your wake. You kill all the animals and trees and you think you can get away with it without any repercussions. Well think again. Nature is correcting itself. Mother Nature is having a party and youre not welcomed.

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  19. Anonymous says:

    from zero to a 100 in less than 1 day……cig have proved they have no clue whatsoever. their incompetence will cost lives

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  20. Www says:

    My April cruise included GC on the itinerary. I love GC. Beautiful island, super nice people. It saddens me that I will not be able to visit this time, if I go on this cruise at all. However, I commend you on taking a strong stand to protect the island and its people. But it’s better to live frugally for 60 days and LIVE, than have the island population possibly ravaged by a virus in the name of tourism. People will visit in droves once this is under control. I know I will be back often. Godspeed.

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    • Anonymous says:

      “Live frugally for 60 days”? You have a serious misconception about the value of cruise tourism to these islands. 60 days is not nearly long enough

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      • Anonymous says:

        11.30am You are sure mean. Living frugally is good advice especially when your income is reduced.Maybe you don’t care for cruise tourism but many people make their living from it.So thank you Www@ 11.47pm for your kind remarks and please come again.

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  21. Anonymous says:

    Why just follow what singapore do… shutdown all business for a month clean sanitize all places thats it.

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  22. Anonymous says:

    Not good enough. The travel ban of countries is extremely weak, considering a phenomenal amount of cases arising globally. Furthermore, there are hundreds of Caymanian students overseas. Has any effort been made to extradite them? Local businesses and employees need guaranteed funds if they are to take ‘social distancing’ seriously. I can assure you people will go to work despite symptoms, so they can continue to provide for themselves and their families. The vulnerable populations need special attention too.

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  23. Anonymous says:

    People are lining up in the grocery stores to hoard toilet paper. What about the people next to you in line? Schools closing for months, where are all these kids going to be hanging out? Crime and pregnancy rate- watch out! Can you also imagine how difficult it’s going to be to get youth to go back to school after a two month party? I understand cruise ships as they are known contaminates, but I come in contact with more people at work daily than on a plane( & currently there’s some great air fares).
    Drink hot fluids, clean surfaces, wash your hands with soap and water and stay home if feeling ill.

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  24. Anonymous says:

    I’ve been fairly critical of the government here recently but this time I have to say well done. They’ve made the difficult decisions that needed to be made.

    I would still prefer that travel from the US and UK was restricted, and I have NOT forgotten about what McKeeva did, but this is the most decisive thing I’ve ever seen them do. Hats off to them.

    Now it’s up to us to get through this disaster as best we can. Remember there’s only so much the government can do. In the end it’s up to all of us to stay smart and keep our senses of humour and one day this will be another story to tell our Grandkids when they’re sick of hearing about Ivan.

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    • Anonymous says:

      They have not done anything yet.
      How many UCU beds and ventilators were purchased? How many extra medical staff was hired? Are social services ready to purchase and deliver groceries to elderly and disabled? Is there a phone number to call and request it? How those who would have no income going to be protected?

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  25. Anonymous says:

    Anthony must be wetting himself…blaming it all on the gay stuff

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  26. Chris Johnson says:

    This is very sad. The effect is that the man in the street will be seriously hit. Duty free shop employees, dive operation employees and those in restaurants will be laid off with no income. They need to be supported and may I suggest the following:

    1. Mortgage payments be deferred;

    2. The tax on oil and gas be seriously reduced for a few months. This will help with regard electricity bills as well as travel;

    3. Duty on certain foodstuffs and household essentials be reduced.

    4. Employers help their staff as best they are able.

    5. The CIG form a citizens committee to address the above and the virus ramifications. Input from the populace is essential.

    Government may well need to give handouts but the above would have a positive effect. There are many people out there who are happy to assist, in particularly the service clubs and charities.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Sage advice from a wise man! Excellent suggestions Chris. Cayman would be crushing it if our government listened to people of your calibre.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Yesterday, i was talking to two Jamaican friends who are in the tourism industry. They are in a quandary as they do not know how they will survive over the next two or more months. Both jobs are heavily dependent on the cruise ships and while they were not laid off, they were informed they will not be get paid. Their questions were how to pay rent, buy food and send money to Jam for their families? The landlord just wants his money as does the supermarket.
      My daughter works at a health service place, and they were informed of a cut in hours until further notice. Best guess is to about 50% of their normal week until economy gets better. My nephew is in banking and he now has reduced hours, work from home. No idea of how much his pay will be cut.
      In the meantime, people will have to live. Most of us live paycheck to paycheck. If your total bills are taking 50% of your pay (which is the max banks will lend you) one can expect a rise in crime as the situation gets desperate for those who just survive in the normal Cayman world. Glad to see that this morning, the banks are offering to assist where needed.
      I pray it will not get to this but one has to be realistic.

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  27. Anonymous says:

    50 where did the number come from or is that as far as Alden can count.
    You have just shut every bar and restaurant on Cayman. Please come to a sensible # of 200-250

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  28. Anonymous says:

    Thanks to Mr. Roy Bodden and Mr. Gilbert McLean for expressing their advice on the talk show this morning….shows real decisive leadership….

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    • Anonymous says:

      7.45pm Are youaware thst those two made McKeeva yheir Govt leader on more than one occasion? Real decisive leadership?

  29. Shift The Economy-First Capitalist Paradigm CIG says:

    1.Good move. But as usual, we are behind the rest of the world in taking critical action, even our neighbors in this region. Is it because the US has declared a state of emergency that we have finally acted and now will have local testing? Why are we so ate? Grossly late. And why are we still weighing the options about extending the travel ban to the US when they’re in a state of emergency? Why not ban all non essential travel that falls outside of importing essential goods to the Island? Is it that challenging to implement short term strategies to protect our population aka the most valuable human resources– ourselves? Sick people cannot be productive.

    2.Right now, CIG must focus on protecting the health of the population. That should be the only focus in the immediate future. Decisions won’t always be popular, particularly among the business class that are focused more on profit, but this virus will affect everyone, irrespective of ones socioeconomic status. And unlike hurricane season, there’s no where for the rich to shelter in the US and UK. Even other country that are considered safe zones, have already issued stringent quarantine measures or travel bans. This is it for most of us right now. Focus, CIG. Stop weighing the options we don’t really have. Time for foresight and forward planning.

    3.Regarding forward planning, what resources will government allocate to non working persons and the vulnerable (children, indigents, critically and mentally ill etc) in the short term? Flow has issued a warning to customers to pay bills their online etc. Pay bills? I hope there’s enough of a healthy population for Flow to bill in the coming weeks and months.

    4.While we can’t remake our economy, CIG can shift their economy-first capitalist for the short term. We must understand that during a global pandemic crisis, more socialized and creative measures to support the population must be created. That’s why China has now stabilized. That’s why Italy’s banks have given a grace period to mortgage payers. That’s why Japan has issued subsidies to persons who have to stay at home. That’s why South Korea has drive thru testing. Issuing a shut down is just one necessary step in protecting the health of Cayman. But now, what else? Really hope there are some creative solutions coming our way. Everyone’s health depends on it.

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  30. Anonymous says:

    Government needs to provide some guidance on the 50 person ban – how will it be enforced? Does it mean that all restaurants/bars can stay open as long as they have less than 50 people at any one time? Over the course of a day / night there could be well over double that and transfer from surfaces can still occur…will they have to be cleaned in between each set of 50? Who will monitor this? Lots of questions that need answering soon…

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    • Anonymous says:

      People have a responsibility to act in the community interest. If you are a restauranteur and you are still packing 60+ people in at a time shame on you. There shouldn’t need to be enforcement in this situation.

      What happened to common sense?

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    • Anonymous says:

      So nice this was foisted on us late on a Friday, so the pols can avoid answering these questions for the weekend, leaving the public to guess.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Jesus Christ it is just F——- common sense.

      Don’t congregate in public places

      No need for enforcement, just frigging common sense….

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    • Anonymous says:

      @7.31pm I would hope that cleaning of all surfaces is ongoing whether there is covid-19 or not .

  31. Anonymous says:

    You can always tell when elections are coming up, its the only time any decisive actions are taken on any issues

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  32. Anonymous says:

    And still no explicit banning of church gatherings which thousand of people attend on a weekly basis

    All of this won’t matter a bit when people especially old people voluntarily sit in poorly ventilated rooms surrounded by dozens of other people where they are unable to wash their hands will inevitably touch their faces

    This is going to go well

    Very well

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  33. Anonymous says:

    Does that mean that restaurants/bars will be limited to a max of 50 customers each?

  34. Anonymous says:

    now my wife and 2 children have to stay at home for 6 weeks, will CUC and the water authority help with funding the bills due to the extra consumption at home?

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  35. Cayman not prepared at all says:

    So is government going to assist businesses with covering utilities, staff costs, lease payments, salaries (on this note drop labour laws so they can release staff)?
    Is government employees who are single parents who now have their kids at home going to assist with their salaries as they won’t be able to work?
    Are there enough ventilators on island?
    How many testing kits are on island?

    UK lead scientists have said they need to build immune systems and need at least 60 million people to catch this virus.

    Personally maybe we should all catch it as many of us won’t even show symptoms especially kids, youth and most health people under 50..

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  36. Anonymous says:

    I appreciate the bans and closures but the Premier and team had nothing to say about what is going to happen to us the working people of the Cayman Islands or the economy in general..

    Why didn’t he meet with the banks to get them to do at least a 3 month mortgage holiday until we get past this? Are we going to wait until everyone is in foreclosure again?

    What about CUC? Gas is at an all time low and their prices have not come down for months. How about dropping the 15% guarantee for 3 months? Trump said today that the price is so low that they are buying it up for their countries reserves.. Gas at the pumps in Cayman are at CI$4.54 plus or basically US$5.54..Gas in the USA now is US$2 and less RETAIL. How the hell can it be 3 times that in Cayman?

    This is so much more than the Coronavirus and it is about our very survival.

    I was hoping to see the Finance Minister and even the Tourism Minister there today to show leadership and maybe someone from the bankers association to say what they are willing to do.

    Come on PPM/Unity or whatever you call yourselves. You are a bit behind the gun but really after all the fiascos we have had we would really like to see some leaderships in these dire times…

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    • Anonymous says:

      They are not worried about us..Their salaries are guaranteed so their mortgages won’t be affected, they have the money for child care and they need the support from the heavy hitters at CUC to get re-elected so don’t look for any help there..

      Time for some true leadership..even Trump yesterday announced what they will be doing to help his people..

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  37. Anonymous says:

    A day late and a dollar short, as usual. Now we will all suffer (except our MLAs) we will have no income for 60 days, thanks. Our staff will be laid off, their lives will be thrown in to chaos. Many will loose everything they have worked years for. But Alden and Co. will still get fat paychecks, and survive this with no worries.

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  38. Anonymous says:

    Guys, the government actually stopped up today and made some incredible decisions…they’ll likely do more on Monday regarding banks and finance…none of us have better ideas

    Go wash your hands and support the government and your community

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  39. Anonymous says:

    Boring. Build our damn port!

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  40. Anonymous says:

    A huge day for the Government. You are officially in my good books again.

    11
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  41. Anonymous says:

    Mr Lee can you tell us the reason for the obsession with toilet paper in conjunction with the virus-

    13
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    • Anonymous says:

      Have you ever whipped your ass with a grape leaf? Seriously production going to be shuttered and factories unoccupied for weeks. So unless you like. A sea grape leaf……

  42. Roxanni says:

    Will the government ask the employers from prived sectors and the ones who rely on turism only to get part of the salary until everything is back to normal?

    Will the ban of cruie ship many of us are out of job.
    Thanks

    1
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    • Anonymous says:

      This is what it’s going to be like for us in the future if we don’t build the port I was against it but I’m changing my mind!

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      • Anonymous says:

        Easy solution, don’t rely on one day tourism that is subject to weather and economic emergencies. Promote over night tourism whose participants spend money all week and do not rely on a floating Petrie dish.

    • Anonymous says:

      Why? They didnt do it for anyone in the construction industry when thousands got laid off in 2009?

  43. Anonymous says:

    Before people start dying and blame the virus, how many extra life support ventilators hospitals designated for COVID pneumonia patients only?
    How many doctors know how to treat pneumonia caused by COVID? They had plenty of time to learn how it was done in China.
    Is there a designated ambulance to transport infected people to hospitals? Would paramedics arrive fully protected?
    Are designated areas in cayman hospitals all equipped and ready to accept first patients?
    How many ICU doctors, ICU nurses and equipment technician on standby?
    Where temporary “ hospital” , tent or whatever is located?

    Is Cayman really prepared?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Take your meds bruh

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    • Caymanian Donkey says:

      Great questions and simple answer is “No”!

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    • Sarky says:

      But we have plenty of places you can go and pray for salvation.

      13
    • Anonymous says:

      And yet in other news, more than 50 people were in Friday happy hour at Karoo…

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    • Anonymous says:

      No, our Government has had months to prepare and did diddly. But rest assured they and theirs will be fine. No matter how much they screw up, we will pay them lavishly. You might starve, loose your home, or go bankrupt. But our politicians will be fine in her ivory towers, eating cake.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Now they are banning the cruise ships from coming here. It’s to.late now. They should.have banned them one.month ago. The Virus got here from.the cruise ship guy at Health City, and his wife staying at a hotel in West Bay going to spread it to
      Many more people. Same. Same on this government for.letting this happen. Make sure and never ever vote for them again

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    • Anonymous says:

      N O
      Ducking
      Way………

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  44. Anonymous says:

    Govt needs to do everything possible to keep people employed. They should suspend all pension payments for both employers and employees.

    If people start getting fired this is going to get ugly. All loan bank payments should similarly be deferred. Not forgiven, just extend the term. Rents could be deferred as well. We want to keep as much cash in the hands of our working class as possible. To not do so will constrict the economy even further, and cost more money to rectify later.

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    • Anonymous says:

      You better clarify what you mean by “suspend pension payments for employees” Bobo. I think I know what you mean but several of my buddies receiving pensions they worked for for over 30 years will not accept their payments being stopped and that would just further depress the economy anyway. You need to clarify that’s not what you meant ( I hope).

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      • Anonymous says:

        And there will be a tomorrow. It will be critical for pensions to be paid while the markets are low if there is to be any real prospect of there being any sufficient income in retirement. Every dollar contributed today is worth $1.30 when compared to every dollar contributed only one month ago.

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        • Anonymous says:

          How much is 5% of zero? If small businesses close there will be nothing to pension for future market gains. Duh. People are seriously going to have no money if they are not employed Einstein.

      • Anonymous says:

        I mean that businesses should not be required to pay into the pensions, and that pensions should not be deducted from employees’ salaries. Sorry if any confusion. Not suggesting that pensioners not get paid! Yikes that would constrict the economy, totally the opposite of what I am suggesting.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Alive first. Employed second.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Start cancelling work permits and give people 14 days to leave Cayman.

      14
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      • Anonymous says:

        What a kind and charitable thought. You must go to church!

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        • Anonymous says:

          No. It is the only option to minimize the spread and to minimize the economic impact on Cayman and the Caymanian people. Our healthcare facilities will not be able to deal with the number of patients as it is. Our needs assessment unit will quite probably not be able to deal with feeding and financing the many that do and will need help. Any unemployed expatriate who is not a permanent resident or a dependent on another must be made to leave as long it is safe to require them to do so – and that must be done now. There may not be flights in the near future, and then we will not have the option.

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          • Anonymous says:

            Work permit holders are already here you idiot and they run this economy by hard work, not by whining.

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            • Anonymous says:

              Your permit comin up for renewal or wha?

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            • Anonymous says:

              Ummm, the poster only referred to the unemployed. i.e. Foreign nationals with no jobs and therefore running nothing.

              P.S. unemployed people have no work permit.

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              • Anonymous says:

                Wrong. Hundreds of people here on work permits taken out by friends, family, unscrupulous employers with no work for them.

            • Anonymous says:

              Govt should make employers surrender permits and rec back the fee or a bonus for. Doing so. Here for money, money is.not here so you go simple.

      • Anonymous says:

        Then you’d better hope that doesn’t include the hundreds of doctors, nurses and ancillary workers that you will rely on. You’d better hope that banishing people from their property, their jobs or even their families doesn’t create an irreversible hole in the economy or social fabric. You’d better hope that once you’ve started down the road of forcible repatriations you will be able to cope with the breakdown in law and order as people fight for their human rights.
        But most of all, you’d better hope they return, because without work permit holders this country will crash and Caymanians will be the ultimate losers.

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        • Anonymous says:

          You missed the point. For those that are no longer working and cannot afford to be living in Cayman, they need to leave. What other option is there? The whole point of a work permit is that you are here to work, no work no permit. Fight for what human rights, the right to live here when you are on a work permit which is no longer required by your employer?

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          • Anonymous says:

            Right so the spouses and kids of the doctors and nurses and teachers and housekeepers and everyone else should be thrown out of the country to fend for themselves but not the people who actually help you, they can stay.

            Look in the mirror, you see an asshole.

      • Anonymous says:

        And when this panic is over how will business recover without staff…..idiot

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        • Anonymous says:

          Ummm, they advertise, and if no qualified local applies they Respectfully request a work permit. Funny how that works.

          5
          2
      • Anonymous says:

        How exactly do you propose we repatriate them? No, we are all in this same boat together for the next, at least 60 days. We need to be kind and work together, not go all Lord of Flies.

        3
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        • Anonymous says:

          Cayman Airways is flying to Jamaica every day. It could also fly elsewhere. Nowhere is closing its borders to its own citizens. Time for government to contribute repatriation fees to the effort.

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          • Anonymous says:

            Is there ANYTHING that you xenophobic, homophobic hateful scumbags won’t hijack to spout your racist shite? It’s a friggin pandemic. It affects all people. Who gives a shit if they were born 90 miles away on another island or have a different accent or different skin colour. There is no nation on Earth that is improved by having citizens like you.

      • Anonymous says:

        So when all the doctors and nurses leave since you cancel their work permits … who is gonna care for you ???

    • Anonymous says:

      Who pays for all the deferrals? How do companies and individuals who live off the income and rent streams survive and pay their staff when they have no money coming in as a result? Where is the secret money tree to solve this? Please think before spouting half-baked ideas….

      11
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  45. Anonymous says:

    Bans and closures are fine… but Do they have nurses and doctors and other hospital staff to replace those who might end up in quarantine?
    How many life support units in Cayman hospitals?
    How people in self quarantine going to buy groceries?
    How disabled people living alone will be monitored?
    How people left without work=no paychecks are going to pay their bills?
    How contaminated protective gear is going be disposed of? Who will oversee it?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Blows my mind that everyone expects Government to solve everything for them…

      The world is and always has been about the survival of the fittest. Just look at the animal kingdom.

      People will need to make a plan to look after themselves or face facts that everyones time runs out in the end.

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    • Anonymous says:

      In France Social workers deliver food to older people to prevent the spread of infection.

      10
  46. Anonymous says:

    The economic fallout is going is going to be extraordinary…almost impossible to comprehend at this point.

    48
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  47. Anonymous says:

    How am I, as a small business owner in the cruise tourism sector, supposed to deal with the needs of my employees? I don’t have the ability to pay them if no money is coming in for 60 or 90 days. Sure we have some contingency funds, but not that level. What about rents and mortgage payments. Will there be a bank holiday on loan payments? At least that way we could continue to pay employees, many of whom live paycheck to paycheck.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Are your needs more important than the health and safety of the rest of the island? Sure, you’ll take a hit…so what? It’s a part of owning your own business. Happy for government to give you a helping hand through this time so long as you’re willing to share your future profits in return
      #Idon’tgivearatsass

      10
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      • Anonymous says:

        I am not talking about me. I am talking about hourly wage workers. And trying to do everything possible to help during this crisis. You are just spewing negativity. We need to look at what can be done to mitigate. I have had the same staff for over a decade. I will put them first. But we need to know, what if anything our Government has planned to assist during this crisis. And their silence is telling.

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      • Anonymous says:

        You can tell just who are the greedy money pigs by reading some of the comments here. They’re no better than the people buying up all the toilet paper. Full of fart the lot of them

    • Anonymous says:

      Suspend Work Permits to send them home.

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      • Anonymous says:

        And what makes you think that these people who you are deporting will want to return later???

        4
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        • Anonymous says:

          They will not be being deported. They will be being made redundant. They will be entitled to fair treatment and numerous payments. They will no longer have work permits. They will be unable to sustain themselves. Home is the best place for them.

          4
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    • We need more answers says:

      Agreed, I also now have to consider the same, I have 6 Caymanian employees All the Caymanians have kids to support and other home expenses as you state.
      Yes, being a small business I have a reserve of funds but not for a long period, if I had to fire them I would be able to pay them their severance pay as most have them have been with me for over 15yrs. So I go into bankruptcy, we all loose our homes jobs etc.
      I’d like to know what governments plans are to assist Cayman businesses, of course except the supermarkets as they are making a fortune right now, oh why can’t they have 50 persons allowed in the store at a time like other places? I hope government know a several bars and restaurants will collapse as alot of other businesses on island.

      9
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      • Anonymous says:

        This PANIC and the steps taken by CIG are a knee-jerk reaction to the scenario being pushed by world media to sell their products (newspapers / so called news shows) How many of these media outlets have carried the figures of how many people worldwide die of Influenza every month. Or any other communicable infection? Headlines like “number of deaths explodes to 20” for example are equivalent to shouting “fire!” In a crowded theater!

        CNS: The current crisis is not being created by the media but has been identified by medical officials in every country, including the WHO, which has called it a pandemic. The difference with COVID-19 and seasonal flu is that flu is a known quantity. Yes, people get flu and some people die but it’s about the same every year and there is a vaccine to give to the most vulnerable. The experts are still learning about this. One thing is clear is that it spreads very very quickly and the danger is that is causes a sudden spike in people who are seriously ill and need respirators, for example. Hospitals in Italy, where 1200 people have died, are overwhelmed. This is what people here are trying to avoid.

        3
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        • Anonymous says:

          My thumbs down was for CNS

          5
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        • Anonymous says:

          Correct CNS … we know that thousands die ebery year from Flu, heart attacks, and other diseases, but these are known cases and pre-existing conditions, for which they are known treatments and known outcomes. There is quite a bit of uncertainty about this new strain of corona-virus, which appears to have come from bats, and for which there is no known vaccines or cures, it’s just that the persons wiht stronger immune systems will fight it off, but others will be severely impacted.

    • Anonymous says:

      Mate, I feel for you. Hopefully some mortgage holidays and things will be introduced. But the bottom line is that this is going to be really difficult for everyone and we have no choice but to endure it as best we can. There is only so much that the government can do about it.

      If the finger should be pointed anywhere, point it at the US government. They have let their people down royally and when travel from the US restricted it’ll be their fault not CIGs.

      6
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      • Anonymous says:

        You clearly have no children or responsibilities beyond the bar you will have to ‘endure’ the closure of.

    • Anonymous says:

      Regrettably you (and most of us) need to consider that this shut down may well be more than 60 or 90 days. In that scenario redundancies are a very sad but necessary solution. In fact, there may be no other option. The law requires work permit holders be laid off before Caymanians, but all nationalities will feel unparalleled consequences, all over the world.

      11
    • Anonymous says:

      How many are WP holders? Cancel the permits and let them go home.

      6
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      • Anonymous says:

        Great idea genius, and who is going to run this damn island after this stupidity is over. Screw us, and we will screw you. Caymanians are the most vulnerable in this case so don’t think for one minute you’re coming out of this unscathed by getting rid of the people who make your fragile economy work.

        3
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    • Anonymous says:

      As a prudent business person you have business continuity and disruption insurance so now you make your claim against that….

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    • Anonymous says:

      Guess their Work Permits will be suspended and they get sent home.
      Why not? Cayman needs to take care of their own FIRST.

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    • Vacation pay says:

      Give them their two to three weeks vacation pay. Restuarants do this in September every year. Everyone just have to take their vacation now.

    • Anonymous says:

      Pay them out your own pocket or lay them off. Easy for me to say, hard for you to do. That’s why you’re the boss.

    • Anonymous says:

      Use what you have, ask employees to take a cut and hope for the best. If we are lucky the gov will pony up a stimulus package for small businesses.

  48. Anonymous says:

    This is a good start but after what happened today with CAL we clearly need to stop commercial flights for a period as well.

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    • Anonymous says:

      What a load of drivel. I was just at The Westin for a beer. There were more than 50 people there. It’s a business (which are exempt) but it’s also a bar. Make up your mind! Complete and utter media hyped nonsense. Keep the people scared and you can do what you want to them. And who on earth is going to enforce this ban? RCIPS? Laughable stuff from a gullible bunch of clowns.

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    • Anonymous says:

      And how long is “a “period”? This thing is not going away in a few days or even a few weeks. It’s impossible to isolate the entire population indefinitely. I think the UK has the right idea with the “herd immunity” plan. When we were kids, before the days of the MMR vaccine, our parents used to send us to play with our friends who had measles or chickenpox or other infectious diseases so that we caught it and then had immunity. The biggest issue is having the facilities to cope with those who will require treatment, but the idea is to slow down progression of the virus so that the health services are not inundated at the same time.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Herd Immunity is used to build resistance/control viral/bacterial infections for which the body has a natural immune response. This is not the case with this strain o Corona-virus which seems to have come from animals( bats) to humans. So that may a gamble that may just prolong the rapid spread.

  49. Anonymous says:

    Tough but appropriate decisions. Congrats CIG!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Apparently appropriate for people with sufficient funds to ride out two months with no income. Not so much for people living hand to mouth. This is going to be devastating. And for what? A flu that only really addresses elderly and persons with underlying conditions. Why not quarantine those most at risk? This action will not stop the spread significantly.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Now fix the damn dump!

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    • Anonymous says:

      I’m actually shocked. Well done CIG.

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