Joint message from the Executive Council and Island Council

 

We are living in unprecedented times. For months we have watched as the virus called Covid-19 has wreaked havoc in countries, communities, and families far from our shores. We watched as borders closed and citizens were asked to stay home to protect not only themselves but also the most defenseless among them. Recently we discovered that the virus was present in our small and vulnerable community and now this too has become our reality. While at this time we are not sure how the virus came to our island, we can only hope that by practicing social distancing among ourselves that we have been able to already limit the spread.

Now we are asked to do more than just social distancing. With the fact that the virus is among us, we must do everything in our power to stop Covid-19 in its tracks. In order to do this, we must stop physical contact with our friends, families and our neighbors so that the virus no longer can find a place to live. We know that this is not easy, but if we want to protect our loved ones and our community we must adhere to these latest measures. It is important to note that this virus can impact everyone regardless of age and health status, so everyone must do what they can to also protect themselves.

It is also very imperative as a society to remember that we have very limited medical capacity. We must be aware that our partners within the Dutch Caribbean, where our patients normally go for healthcare, are also waging a war against this deadly disease. This is another reason why it is important that everyone does everything possible to limit their contacts unless absolutely necessary.

What we do know is that the virus has been here for some time and at this moment we don’t know how many people have it. We must support the Public Health Department and give them the chance to do their work, such as testing, isolating and tracing close contacts of those who are or may become ill. Your full cooperation and honesty are absolutely necessary to aid these workers who are working tirelessly to help all of us. If people continue to move around unnecessarily, this will only increase the amount of work they have to do to protect us and ultimately eliminate the virus from the island.

As your elected officials from both the Island and Executive Council, we know that many of you have concerns about how things will move forward in the near future. We have heard these concerns and we want to assure you that we are working to address them with each other and also with our partners in the region as well as the Netherlands. We would also like to impress upon you that at this point we should all be focused on one goal: eliminating Covid-19 from Saba.

There is no need for us to inject politics into our new realities caused by this virus and as such we applaud our Island Governor and the Outbreak Management Team for their continued efforts. It is of utmost importance that we follow the directions of our Island Governor as he is the chairman of the team tasked with the tedious mission to rid Saba of this deadly virus. We would also like to extend our gratitude to the frontline workers who are putting their own safety at risk to ensure that our sick persons are tended to, our grocery orders are processed and delivered and that vital functions throughout our community continue albeit in a limited capacity. Thank you for your dedication during these challenging times.

The Saban identity has been forged by the very fire of adversity and to overcome this challenge will require the fortitude that is the legacy of our ancestors. Saba has been through tough times before and if we all stand together and do what is required of us during these troubling times, we can rest assured that we will see our friends and family when the dawn of this terrible night is over.

GIS Saba.

Thursday, April 16: Island Governor Jonathan Johnson updates on Covid-19 status
Bonaire Registers First Covid-19 case; No Additional Measures for now

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