Barbados cracks down on illegal parties amid lockdown

Officials put the brakes on four illegal parties held on Sunday amid a two-week lockdown to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Coordinator of the COVID Communications Unit, Ambassador Elizabeth Thompson said at a press conference that the parties were in breach of the Emergency Management (COVID-19) (Curfew) No 3 Directive 2021.

“Today, alone, the [COVID-19] compliance team…broke up four parties. Yes, people are still having parties and they are not necessarily wearing their masks, and they are exceeding the number allowed,” she said.

“I am asked to remind you that it is not legal to have mass gatherings; that this could result in up to one year in prison, or a fine of up to BDS$50,000 (US$25,000). Now we don’t want to criminalise anybody; that is not the intention. We want to protect you and we want you to protect us and the rest of our country and our communities.”

As of Saturday, 1,709 people tested positive for the virus. Of those, 291 were active cases, including 33 new ones.