Premier hopeful measures are working

| 07/04/2020 | 77 Comments
Cayman News Service
Premier Alden McLaughlin at Tuesday’s press briefing

(CNS): Premier Alden McLaughlin was considerably more upbeat at the daily pres briefing on Tuesday, after venting his frustrations on Monday over the need for people to stay at home. After evidence of full compliance with the lockdown Monday night, far fewer people on the road Tuesday and promising indications regarding test results, he said he believed people are understating what government is trying to do and that the measures taken are working.

He said he remained “positive about the positives”, as he referred to the six new samples that came back positive on Tuesday for COVID-19. Four were from the isolated students, which he said vindicated the decision to create an isolation facility and test all those students before they were able to leave.

The premier said there was some reassurance that, 16 days after closing the borders there was no real evidence of significant community transmission of this virus. Most of the new cases are “clusters”, in other words the family connections to people who returned and went into isolation at home.

Repeating the stay-home and hygiene messages, he said, “I do believe that if we can remain vigilant and obey the protocols… this increases the chances of us keeping this virus from moving into significant community spread.”

The premier pointed to New Zealand as one of the countries that is not just flattening but squashing the curve, and noted that they are following the same type of restrictions that we are here, with plans to retain those strict limits for another four weeks.

“We are not the only ones that have adopted this rather draconian approach to dealing with this but we are determined… not just to contain the virus but to eliminate it within these borders,” McLaughlin said.

“If and when we get to that point, it will be possible to relax almost all of these restrictions, except for the closure of the border, and allow normal activity to continue. But we first have to ensure we have run this virus to ground,” he added.

Thanking everyone for their cooperation so far, the premier appeared heartened that people do appear to understand what the government is trying to do with the measures that have been adopted.

He also revealed that the border shut down will be formally extended by Cabinet this week, and while it has not yet confirmed the length of the extension, it is expected to be until 30 May.

However, that does not mean that the port or airport will open then, as government will continue to extend the closure because of the global situation.

McLaughlin said, as he has before, that it is unlikely the borders will be open for visitors again for many more months. And even when they do open, given the expected global recession in the fallout from COVID-19, tourism in Cayman is unlikely to return to anything like what it was by next year.

But while the premier was more upbeat about people following the curfew rules and helping contain the virus spread, he said there was still no let up on the number of requests coming into government for exempted workers. He said the department in his ministry where the decisions are made received 365 requests today alone.

He went into detail about the work that the staff members are doing and the wide category of exemptions being made and why. Although he said there is no list of exempted companies that the public could see, McLaughlin explained that businesses are getting exemptions for certain types of essential workers in what is a very complex process.

See the full press briefing on CIGTV below, set to start at the premier’s prepared remarks after his “grim reaper” world stats report:


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Category: Health, Medical

Comments (77)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Does no one remember Gary from Bird Box? No new people!

  2. Anonymous says:

    The premier is so rude! On his phone when questions are being asked, coughing without covering his mouth properly. What a crap leader. Lead by example you muppet!

  3. Anonymous says:

    What’s really coming to the fore in all of this is a realization of just how month-to-month many people live. and its not just the ‘poor’, it seems there are a lot of households that are panicking regarding the economy being shut even just 1 month in, which makes me wonder how they’re all driving their new cars, living in the lovely homes, and members of all the gyms and everything else. What way is that to live whereby you’re always depending on the next paycheck to scrap by? Why the pretense?

    Weird. And how are banks lending to people to sustain lifestyles that clearly are 1 month (maybe 2) away from falling off a cliff?

    A reckoning is coming after this passes, even if not by government or finance, but by yourself. Put something away each month, maybe not need the latest iphone or 3 cars or ‘executive home’!

    What a house of cards this has been.

  4. Anonymous says:

    We need ticketing police officers inside the stores, not outside checking ID, casually watching lineups to get in, or practicing their standup comedy material – that’s already covered by the supermarket staff and private security. As of Wed April 8th, the supermarket customers, security, and staff still don’t seem to fully understand that the 6ft requirement in public is not an encouraged suggestion, it’s actually the legal minimum distance and a fineable offense. All conception of a 6ft personal exclusion zone seems to vanish as people step over the threshold. We cannot cluster five abreast in produce and bakery aisles, we cannot obstruct aisles chatting indefinitely while others lineup in the heat, and we cannot brush past others inside the store like we there isn’t a community transmitted contagion we are trying to get under control. Everyone allowed inside should demonstrate they have a list. Idle browsing shoppers cannot be allowed inside to obstruct turnover when dozens are snaked in lines outside waiting to get in. Today I saw a lady pushing her newborn baby in her cart like it was just another Wednesday…as long as this cluelessness pervades, we will be clogging our medical capacity and it will, sadly, mean deaths.

    • Anon says:

      10.33am Take it, or leave it and go hungry. We don’t want the Gestapo in our supermarkets, they are doing their best and I’m happy with their efforts.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Premier why did you apologize to the govnor and not to the victim of Mckeeva and to the LGBT community when your cabinet clown Dwayne made the gaypril joke?

  6. Anonymous says:

    Good evening Cayman Islands including cayman brac and little cayman. Am, am, am, am, am, am, am, am, am, am, Thank you and God Bless.l

  7. Anonymous says:

    Mr. Premier please practice what you preach and stop coughing in the direction of the gov and use your elbow to cough or sneeze in.

  8. Anonymous says:

    I suspect a few fellow lodge members companies have been given exception. The amount of work vans on the roads is unreal.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes, the Lodge are certainly raking it in or will be on the money end of any stimulus packages. But yes, the liquor stores are still open. Crass ignorance from crass people.
      Using the police to enforce their own lawlessness is a disgrace.

  9. Anonymous says:

    How many cancer patients will die due to interrupted care and treatments.

    • Anonymous says:

      More than will die from Covid-19

    • Anonymous says:

      Also, if they get covid they probably won’t be around for another treatment. But that’s terrible if there are patients out there not receiving treatment.

  10. Anonymous says:

    I see the first batch of curfew breakers are in court today….

  11. Anonymous says:

    If he set out with the intention of oppressing the people and crippling the economy, it’s working a charm.

    • Anonymous says:

      true but he had no choice. his failure was not to acknowledge the economic effects and not provide any plan….

      • Anonymous says:

        Correct. There are many no contact services that we should be able to use and in turn supporting local business. Just a little list:

        1: curb side pick up of some needs from the house stores by appointment only and surname days only.
        2: banks should deposit cheques via pictures – they do this is 1st world countries already.
        3: pool maintenance, no contact, should be allowed.
        4: they need to split up names more than just by 2, 3 at least!
        5: open shops on sunday for workers only to fulfill delivery orders.

        Just a few ideas that I don’t see being a huge issue!

        • Anonymous says:

          110%

        • Anonymous says:

          Agree with all of those except the pool idea. Pools are not essential. If people keep the pools running and if they have chlorine to chlorinate then that will prevent mosquitoes. Mosquitoes breed in stagnant water. They cant tolerate chlorine either. I know not everyone has chlorine but either way no one is going to die if the pools get a bit dirty.

          • Anonymous says:

            We can’t get chlorine! Some of us are not leaving the house for fear of contracting. Why can’t a pool person come by with no contact? I want a real answer why a no contact service is suspended. Also, mosquito borne illness can worsen and that will clog up our hospitals like Alcoholics would of booze was denied. I’m not trying to be rude, just want real answers. I’m pregnant and told to swim everyday. I’m not interested in leaving the house so don’t suggest the sea.

            • Anonymous says:

              I didn’t realize that you had to have a pool before getting pregnant.

              • Anonymous says:

                You could use the sea but that was before you weren’t worried about catching a deathly virus…

            • Anonymous says:

              So you don’t want to go out because you don’t want to get the virus, but it’s fine to have a poor sod who gets paid minimum wage to go to work where he will be in contact with other poor minimum wage soda, just so you can swim in your pool that you should know how to take care of yourself. So entitled imo.

          • Anon says:

            11.38am Liquor is not essential and improves with age.

        • Anonymous says:

          While I’m sure workers are happy to be collecting a paycheck, do you think they like being out on the front line breathing in your germs just so you can get a can of paint to paint your wall that you should have taken care of months ago?
          The minimum paid workers are the most vunerable while you work from home in your 3500 sqft home with the dirty pool.

    • Anonymous says:

      It’s understandable one may feel oppressed under the current restrictions and the economy is certainly feeling the impacts.
      The reality is all of the hotels, restaurants, the airport, port, and tours could be open today, but there would not be a single visitor arriving. How would that help the economy? The largest market (overwhelmingly) of visitors are from North America and they are planning for peak cases in mid to late May and have advised that no easing will take place until late May earliest. Travel wouldn’t start until months later and that will be a slow ramp up, especially if it is summer.

      The finance industry, one of the other pillars of the economy appears to be operating still which is a relief to see they and government employees are still earning wages.

      The third pillar is construction and may be the only one that falls in a grey area as to whether it should continue to operate. Even if Cayman does their absolute best to contain the contagion, it will be many months before any tourists will be able to arrive.

      I’ve heard it said that unrealistic expectations are just premeditated resentments.
      Worth reflecting on.

    • Anonymous says:

      Pathetic 06.44…nobody set out with any intention to do that and to imply otherwise is sheer madness. No one wants this, but unless dealt with as it is being dealt with now, then the alternates are even bleaker. Look at UK and USA…they are going to be at this for many more months and have huge mortality numbers. Stop moaning, be happy to be alive and with a government doing the right thing.

    • Anonymous says:

      To what end? What’s he getting out of this? I’m sure he’d like a nice meal out too.
      Spewing such hatred is really unbecoming.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Happened several times now and how many times at Press Conferences and still coughing all over and still not covering your mouth with a tissue or something? Please practice what you preach or nobody gonna listen and if they were they gonna stop again after today! We are doing good thanks to all but please have something to cough into.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Mr Premier
    How about we let the school children go back to school on the 27th???
    Other countries have full lock downs BUT schools are still going and they have very minimal cases.

    • Anonymous says:

      crazy idea. it could spread like wildfire in schools and then into peoples homes…

      • Anonymous says:

        Seems other countries with over 30M population can do it AND still keep some business going as well So why can’t we???
        Eventually we are going to get this virus…….Unless you truly believe there will be a vaccine this year And there won’t.

        • Anonymous says:

          You see 838 am that’s why you need to move to that country. Cayman not up to the times….we behind…so just move on and forget about it here…bet you won’t do that though.
          Why should we risk the lives of children and adults just so you can continue to make your profit margins rise. Why are you and so many other people so selfish?

          How can you suggest sending children back to school at this time? You clearly don’t mind having funerals for children. I for one want to preserve the potential future we have in our children. Let us not send them to the slaughter!

          • Anonymous says:

            1001 Dumb A-s. I am retired with a child that should be in school!

            Get with it.
            I have also been around and see this before.
            Test and isolate then repeat BUT move on with limited activities LIKE school.
            But I guess if I said open the bars you would have been all for that but NO.
            Leave the hard curfew in place 100%. Leave the bars and restaurants shut BUT teach our kids that have less than a 0.2% of having a fatal case IF they get it which by the 27th should be know. I DID NOT say open now and if by the 27th there is 1000’s more case well then the island has it and you may as well open the airport as well!

            Also remember on average every human will get a Coronavirus in there live maybe a worse strain maybe a mild one BUT children need to be in school and have social interaction.

            So profit margins mean jack s–t to me!
            As far as being selfish go F–k your self!

        • Anonymous says:

          Ah you mean those with huge mortality numbers? Some people just don’t get it. Choose life or work. Life gets my vote everytime and you have no right to go spreading this thing to people who it may kill, even if it doesn’t kill you.

      • Anonymous says:

        In stead of your one lie seemingly uneducated response PLEASE read some of the actual studies about the risks vs harm for school closures.

        There is more reason to keep them open with a controlled outbreak that the gov. is now patting it self on the back for than to have them closed.

    • Brown Freeman says:

      Have you read the statistic of Cuba? It closed the school the last, many but many children in school age sick. I say that would be wise and safe when thing start getting little bit better, because this is a long marathon, our children HAVE TO BE the last people to get into a crowded non high hygiene environment called schools. For theirs and our safety.

    • Anonymous says:

      School can’t be allowed until we have no new cases. I’ve got two at home and I am desperate for them to be back so that I can work again (if my job still is around by then).. so I get it, but we can’t risk it until this has passed. Thank god I can have my glass of wine after bedtime each night!

    • Anonymous says:

      You don’t care about your child. You just want to get rid of them again and get back to your life right?
      You can’t make this stuff up. People hate being with their kids!

      School is not a baby sitting agency. Teachers are real people with real problems and have a life just like you! Right now teachers are doing their best to accommodate the students given the situation. Sending thousands of children back to school is the stupidest suggestion of the century. Children have developing immune systems! Hence they can get sick really easily.

    • Anonymous says:

      LOL, all you parents hammering on about how wonderful it is to have kids, but yet you all want to get rid of them when it’s inconvenient.
      There really should be a test before you’re allowed to have kids and one of the questions should be would you still want them if you actually had to raise them.

  14. Anonymous says:

    “there was still no let up on the number of requests coming into government for exempted workers. He said the department in his ministry where the decisions are made received 365 requests today alone.”…………..

    Well guess what? -Very soon-, this will be the amount of people that lost their jobs, homes or businesses. It’s the like cure that kills the person before the sickness does.

    The exponential curve is not only related to the virus {that no one is dying from in Cayman}….. It is ALSO the rate of economical devastation that almost 100% of people will be irreversibly affected from in this country. So instead of finding solutions to -bring the economy BACK-, they are instead finding new ways everyday to “squash” it and INCINERATE it into ashes along with the everyone’s livelihoods just for good measure. Exemption? How dare you! {New Zealand by the was has had a huge social welfare program for along time, and have been supporting people livelihoods for decades} We love to look at countries that are nothing like us, and just copy their policies. Let’s see how this model works here in three months from now.

    “No economics considerations” will be considered -> translated -> Unless the MLA’s are directly affected financially, or government workers are being dismissed, -> YOUR economic considerations will NOT be considered. Just so we are clear on the priorities.

    The criticism isn’t toward the -intentions- of the people in charge, or how nice and kind they are. They are all very kind and very nice. But It’s always the best of intentions that screws us all! The criticism is this nonchalant way to consider people’s economic dependencies and -life sustenance- as if it’s perfectly fine, to bankrupt everyone here to comply with your damn intentions!!

    Take people’s financial situation REALLY REALLY and EXTREMELY SERIOUSLY! Just as serious as the f*ing VIRUS!!! EVEN MORE! Hard decisions are not decisions that everyone will tell you how kind and nice you are. People may die, I may die, you may die.. And that’s a FACT that ->LEADERS<- have to deal and recon with, without drowning everyone in financial chaos because THEY just don't want to deal with that reality!! We can't just hold hands and sing Kumbaya for MONTHS until this disease decides to leave us alone (MAYBE), and into CERTAIN FINANCIAL CATASTROPHE! That's NOT an OPTION!

    You think people are upset if they get sick?? Wait until you completely destroy people's livelihoods and their family's, and people's children's futures financially. Let's see if you think you know what UPSET is. You have no idea what UPSET really is, and I can bet you it's not going to be because of the Corona…

    DEAL WITH THE ECONOMIC DISASTER ALREADY IN PROGRESS!

    We have to lock down? FINE, but don't come with this no plan BS and MONTHS of shutdown. What is the plan to at LEAST the local economy going. I don't know is not a PLAN. Even if you have to revise the plan, get a freaking PLAN!

    • Anonymous says:

      Countries go to war to preserve their way of life. People die in wars to protect their way of life. Millions and millions of people have fought and died to protect their way of life for centuries. Here, our way of life, our life’s work, the prosperity of our people and our posterity has been surrendered. What a concept, if only societies would have simply surrendered to the enemy all along so nobody would die. What kind of world are we now living in when we simply surrender?
      I don’t envy the position of our leaders, this is a lose, lose worse situation but I feel it is a grave mistake to simply surrender and hope the enemy will go away before generational damage is put upon this community. The pain and yes death will be untold over the long run. Our war strategy, if you could call it that needs to be much more than hiding.

      • Anonymous says:

        I guess humanity still didn’t get C19 message: stop all feuds, all wars which in essence “to protect our way of life”. Focus on living in harmony with each other and nature.
        Otherwise
        You on this tiny rock will die from starvation and suffocate from the Dum’s fire because there would be no one to help you if you continue this superiority attitude.

        • Anonymous says:

          You and many others are taking an awful lot for granted…Your kumbaya attitude is a head shaker.

    • Anonymous says:

      Great Post.

      And to the Gov………..WHAT IS THE PLAN???
      A lot of us will still get this virus if not now later in the year or next year.

      • Anonymous says:

        Starve the virus is the plan. Stay home. When will idiots figure out what needs to happen? Their cognitive delay resets the clock and prolongs the local economic recovery timetable for everyone. #COVIdiots

        • Anonymous says:

          Half wit, in case you didn’t realize it, there is no economy left without a plan. There are no US dollars coming in. Do you think they are going to accept CI dollars at food or fuel distribution centers outside of Cayman? You fools don’t know what you are in for if some serious levers are not pulled very soon.

        • Anonymous says:

          How long are you starving it our for? The next 2 years? Maybe 3? or forever?
          It will be around long after we starve ourselves!
          When will idiots like you get it?

    • Anonymous says:

      There is a clear plan: starve out community transmission. Challenging selfish/ignorant, like you, who feel they have special priority, will prolong the duration of current conditions, resetting the clock for everyone, AND kill people that should never have been infected. Stay home.

      • Anonymous says:

        When we run out of money, then what?

        • Anonymous says:

          I get it, people who have enough to get by want to wait till it dies, others or the greedier ones want things back to normal. That’s what I’m observing am I wrong?

    • Anon says:

      9.50pm remember the people in charge along with the entire Civil Service and related entities will not feel the slightest pain, it’s a lot easier to suffer from all these restrictions when your livlihood is unaffected.

    • Anonymous says:

      They do have a plan, unfortunately that haven’t shared it.

  15. Anon says:

    I hope they get cracking on outbound flights to get all our poor out of work permit holders back to their homes.

    • Anonymous says:

      Anon. You were doing so good. Now you are back to your negative comments. imagine living in your negative world during this challenging time. Scary. Mental health hotline is available Anon.

  16. BeaumontZodecloun says:

    Well done, Sir. You’ve taken a terrible situation and made the best of it for the most of us.

  17. Anonymous says:

    New Zealand is squashing the curve but they closed the beaches and stopped the hunting (or here it would be fishing)!!!

  18. Anonymous says:

    I agree that the fact that 4 of the students tested positive vindicated the decision to set up the quarantine facility, and should make us all the more grateful that these 4 and the other students volunteered for it. Thanks you all for being considerate – the families and friends of those 4, and anyone who in turn came in contact with them, have dodged a bullet thanks to their volunteering. But the Premier thinks his glass is half full. I think about all those people who were allowed to go home and self isolate on a promise, and wonder if the stats we have had over the last week are attributable to those people and those they came in contact with. Glass is half empty. .

  19. Anonymous says:

    Well done Government! Keep up the good work!

  20. Anonymous says:

    the Best news. Well done. We are well on our way to being one of the few places on the planet that looks like it is under control. We are almost there. Patience.

    • Anonymous says:

      hope you are right. stats don’t back this up…our infection rate is 3 times the global average.
      more testing = more positive results.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Do private planes continue to operate? I know of a person who was in Europe after Cayman closed its gates, then that person was in Cayman and now in Latin America. Well, at least that is what this person’s facebook indicates.

    • Anonymous says:

      Clearly private planes are dependent on airports that are open. In case you haven’t noticed, Cayman is closed.

      • Anon says:

        7.36pm Private planes are coming in frequently, two early this morning and one this afternoon.

        CNS: We have made enquiries about this.

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