Schools in Trinidad and Tobago closed for a week

Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley.

Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago Dr Keith Rowley has announced the closure of schools and universities nationwide.

He made the announcement on Friday (March 13) while speaking in Parliament. “Effective tomorrow, all places of learning inclusive of schools and universities will remain closed for one week, in the first instance, in order to slow the potential spread of COVID-19,” he said.

Rowley also urged managers and business owners to implement realistic sick leave policies and to be flexible with workplace arrangements. He said people should be allowed to work from home where feasible and encouraged all to act on Public Health recommendations.

Rowley said that people should stay home if they are genuinely suffering from a respiratory illness but noted that this was not a pass to “skylark” and evade their responsibilities. He added that there should be a promotion of a workplace culture that supports people staying at home when genuinely sick.

He noted that the Government has advised a number of self-imposed cautionary measures that will slow down, delay and possibly prevent the spread of the virus. He advised citizens to limit their exposure to public places, non-essential mass gatherings and to travel only if essential or an emergency.

As of March 12, the Ministry of Health has reported that of the 52 Covid-19 samples submitted to the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA), one has tested positive.