Fri | Oct 30, 2020

Outdoor events, amusement parks and sports bars to resume starting July 21

Published:Tuesday | July 14, 2020 | 4:22 PM
Local Government Minister Desmond McKenzie - File photo

Local Government Minister Desmond McKenzie has announced that small outdoor events, amusement parks, water attractions and sports bars will be allowed to resume operations temporarily starting Tuesday, July 21.

The arrangement will end on July 31.

Protocols for outdoor events

*Allowable events include small outdoor concerts, parties, round-robins, launches, religious celebrations and festivals.

* In addition to social distancing, mask-wearing, and sanitising rules, these events will be subject to strict protocols.

* No event can be held without a permit. Applications to the Municipal Corporations for permits must have the correct address, approximate size, a recent dated picture of the proposed venue and proposed layout of the event.  

* All approved events must end one hour before the start of the nightly curfew.

* No more than 280 people can gather for an event. This means a maximum 250 patrons and no more than 30 additional production personnel including performers and staff. There must be visible signs such as tape on floors or other markings to ensure that patrons observe all protocols.

* The bar area is only to be used for purchasing drinks. No gathering is allowed.

* No obstruction of public thoroughfares, of vehicular traffic, or of access to private premises is allowed. The provisions of the Noise Abatement Act also apply to these events, and will be enforced.

* All facilities that are being conditionally re-opened, and all events are subject to inspections by officials from the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development, the Ministry of Health and Wellness, the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, the Municipal Corporations and the Jamaica Constabulary Force.

* In addition, there will be a sensitisation and monitoring team comprising the Social Development Commission, the Ministry of Tourism and the Ministry of Health and Wellness. This is a joined-up Government approach, which will feature the employment of over 1,000 young people to ensure the effectiveness of the exercise. 350 will come from the Ministry’s Youth Summer Employment Programme and over 800 are being trained by the Ministry of Health and Wellness.

* The team will monitor events including the round-robins and other parties.

Protocols for Sports Bars

* Sports bars must have a valid amusement license from the local authorities, and certification of safety from the Jamaica Fire Brigade in order to be re-opened.

* No entertainment events are allowed, and no more than 60% of the venue must be occupied at any time.

* There must be at least six feet of space between dining tables, and a maximum four persons are allowed to sit at a table. The tables must not be joined to facilitate large groups.

* Poker boxes and other gaming instruments must be placed at least six feet apart.

* There must be limited use of air conditioning and where possible, bar doors and windows must remain open.

* Signs must be prominently displayed throughout the venue.

*  Night clubs remain closed under the Disaster Risk Management Order.

Protocols for Amusement Parks and Water Attractions

* Amusement parks and water attractions will be allowed to operate between 10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. These facilities include gaming arcades for children and young adults are not to be confused with gaming lounges where various forms of gambling are permitted. No gambling is allowed in any gaming arcade.

* Like the gaming lounges, only venues with a valid amusement licence will be permitted to reopen.

* Railings, barriers, safety harnesses, life jackets, and play equipment must be sanitised frequently. 

* Rides and play equipment must be sanitised after each user, or after users from different families or groups.

* Physical barriers and visual signs must be erected to ensure distancing between people from different families or groups, both in and out of the water. 

* Attractions must not provide items such as towels, goggles and snorkels, however, patrons are allowed to bring their own. These items must not be shared between people from different families or groups. 

* Attractions that provide rides must ensure that there is at least one seat space between members from different families or groups.

* Masks must be worn by all persons on all rides. Rides that do not allow for seat spacing, or for riders to wear masks must remain closed.

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