The Government of Montserrat is preparing to announce a two-million Eastern Caribbean dollar package, to disburse to affected businesses and individuals due to the current lockdown.
Now in its third week, the government implemented the national shutdown to isolate and halt an outbreak of the COVID-19 virus. Seven people were confirmed as positive for the virus and are in quarantine. The island has been in various stages of lockdown since February 6, 2021.
Governor Andrew Pearce said on the Breakfast Show on Monday morning that no one wanted the latest lockdown but by acting quickly and firmly, they have been able to manage the spread of the virus on island. He expressed his thanks to all for their personal sacrifice and patience. The governor said he is hopeful that if there are no additional cases, they can greatly ease the current lockdown protocols this coming weekend.
The latest lockdown he added, has affected among others, single parents, small businesses, and tradesmen. “The government sees that pain and absolutely wants to help.”
He revealed that the public can expect to hear more shortly from Premier Joseph Farrell on the two million-dollar disbursement which is to go to those who are most in need. “We would always like to do more,” Governor Pearce said, calling the allotment a symbol of governments’ awareness of the needs.
Premier Farrell said last week, that the Ministry of Health & Social Services will be handling the processing of payments to those identified for support.
The governor also commended Breakfast Show host Basil Chambers and friends who recently launched an initiative to offer $1000 each to small businesses through a raffle. To date, $19,000 will be given.
“Help cannot just come from government. We also need people helping each other, which is a huge pillar of society. Your initiative Basil is an excellent example of that.”
The governor used his radio time to encourage residents to be vaccinated. While it is a personal choice, he explained, having the majority of the population vaccinated, will place it in a stronger position. Maintaining and strengthening Montserrat’s testing and medical capacity is also a priority. These can be a path towards a rejuvenated economy.