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PM: Construction industry now COVID breeding ground

Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis said yesterday police officers will monitor construction sites to ensure that health protocols are being adhered to amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“As it relates to construction sites, the police will be monitoring sites to ensure that mask-wearing protocols are being followed by all construction workers,” Minnis said.

“Construction operations will now be fined for non-compliance with the orders related to mask wearing and other physical distancing protocols established by the Bahamas Construction Association as approved by the Ministry of Health.

“On a second infraction, the fine will be doubled. On a third infraction, the construction project may be closed. This is extremely important because we’re experiencing today serious concerns with the construction industry.” 

He said the construction industry presents challenges to the health officials in relation to COVID-19.

Minnis said it is important that construction workers wear their masks “so as to assist us in eradicating or diminishing the level of COVID infection that we see today”.

“To put it in a nutshell, what we see is the construction industry now becoming the so-called breeding ground for COVID-19,” he said.

“However, if you wear your mask, according to protocol, then we will be able to eradicate and deal with this problem.”

Minnis has previously expressed disappointment with Bahamian construction workers at The Pointe development not wearing masks on site. 

Data provided by the Ministry of Health last month indicated that workplaces in the trade, utility and construction sectors had the third highest COVID contacts by occupation.

Health officials noted that 97 contacts had been identified.

Those sectors followed the uniformed branches and health sectors, which have been plagued with COVID outbreaks in recent weeks.

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Jasper Ward

Jasper Ward started at The Nassau Guardian in September 2018. Ward covers a wide range of national and social issues. Education: Goldsmiths, University of London, MA in Race, Media and Social Justice

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