TT Government outlines essential services ahead of partial lockdown

Trinidadian MInister of National Security Stuart Young

Trinidad and Tobago is expected to be on lockdown in an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19 from Sunday night.

As announced by Prime Minister Keith Rowley on Thursday (March 26), nationals will have to adhere to Stay at Home orders from Tuesday, March 30 to Wednesday, April 15. Only essential services that are vital to keeping the country operational will remain available.

The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) with support of the Defence Force have been tasked to ensure that citizens remain indoors. Those found in breach of the Stay At Home order can face a TT$50,000 fine.

During a Post Cabinet media briefing on Friday (March 27), Minister of National Security Stuart Young announced which essential services and businesses that will remain open during the partial lockdown. 

The Inland Revenue Division, Treasury, Central Bank and Customs and Excise will remain open and all Government services except for Ministries and Municipal Corporations will close.

The list of essential services to remain operational is as follows:

-The Judiciary in the Magistrates and Supreme High Courts

-Industrial Court and Legal Services

-Sittings of the House of Parliament, meetings of Cabinet

-Sittings of the Tobago House of Assembly and any committee

-Primary emergency and protective services

-State and private emergency ambulance services

-Police Service and the Defence Force

-Fire Services

-Immigration Services

-Strategic Services Agency (SSA)

-Basic services concerning the provision of health, hospital, water, electricity, fire, sanitation, civil aviation, telecommunications and funeral homes

-Workers who support the operation, inspection and maintenance of essential public work facilities including water and sewer main breaks, fleet maintenance personnel, traffic signal maintenance

-Prisons and rehabilitation centres

-Immigration detention centres and other places of detention

-Children’s homes, community residences and places for the care of the differently-abled, socially displaced, the elderly and geriatric homes

-Private security firms, estate constables and special reserve police

-Social services such as social workers, including NGOs that work with the socially disadvantaged and vulnerable

-Support to ensure the effective removal, storage, disposal of residential and commercial solid waste and hazardous waste

-Financial services (banking, businesses and other institutions defined under the Financial Institutions Act)

-Service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation and essential operations of our personal residences including plumbers, electricians, exterminators and only live-in domestic workers.

-Supermarkets, convenience stores, corner shops, discount stores, pharmacies and bulk stores, that supply food and pharmaceutical items

-Manufacturers and distributors of food, beverages, pharmaceuticals including packaging and bottling of these items

-Hardwares

-Port operations and services connected with the loading and unloading of ships, delivery at and from ports

-Only automotive repair and maintenance facilities who are providing direct support to essential businesses

-Postal and shipping services including private companies

-Repair and maintenance of aircraft and marine vessels

-Aviation and airport operations

-Public transportation of water taxis, ferries and motor vehicles and buses (only operating at a 50% capacity)

-Restaurants (only take-away and delivery, no dine-in) as well as services related to food production, agriculture, fisheries, and animal care

-Media (workers supporting radio, newspapers and online media services)

-Energy services, oil and gas industries (only essential workers)

-Hotels, guest houses and eco-lodges

-The Seismic Research Unit of the University of the West Indies

-Construction sites or construction workers not included as essential services but the exemption for construction workers engaged in the construction of healthcare facilities