On Thursday, June 11th, the Outbreak Management Team (OMT) advised Governor Johnson that Saba can move to alert level 1; This change means that there is no longer a limitation on gatherings and events, and contact sports are now fully allowed.
As the BES islands are currently covid free, the public entities have collectively decided to allow specific essential travel between the three islands without the requirement of the mandatory 14-day quarantine, as long as three islands remain closed to international flights. This travel allowance will be referred to as the BES bubble. The fact that the covid situation is fluid means that Saba can change it’s conditions of the BES bubble as our sister islands begin opening up their borders.
The Public Entity Saba is aware that there are many residents of Saba in different countries that want to return to the island, as well as students wishing to come home for the summer vacation. Presently we are monitoring the situation in the region and the world. As borders remain closed, connectivity to the island is a challenge, and as always, the number one priority will continue to be safety and mitigating risks. Now more than ever, we call for patience, understanding, and responsibility from our Sabans, the community, and residents abroad.
However, the relaxing of measures stated above does not mean that the risks of reintroduction do not exist. Saba’s borders will currently remain closed to non-essential travel in order to continue to contain the possible reintroduction or spread of covid-19 on the island.
Of course, while the borders are closed, there are exceptions. Persons that will receive permission to enter the island fall within two groups; residents (repatriation or medical referrals) and essential persons (doctors, specialists, police, project experts, etc.). Saba lacks some specific resources to meet the demands of some health concerns and projects; therefore, particular persons or groups must be allowed to come to the island, while adhering to specific conditions.
The situation pertaining to the opening of borders, quarantine, and traveling continues to be monitored. As things develop, decisions will be made to continue to ensure the safety of our community while also ensuring that essential needs are met. As other islands and destinations begin to reopen, the measures will continue to be assessed and adjusted where needed.