Bars to open as of next week Tuesday

Bars are to re-open as of next week Tuesday, May 19.

Minister of Local Government and Community Development Desmond McKenzie made the announcement a short while ago, at a digital media briefing from Jamaica House, St Andrew.

The official notice is to be made tomorrow, but bars will not open until Tuesday, May 19.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness, in also making mention of the need for responsibility among patrons and operators, said it was a risk to have the reopening of bars. However, he said they were important to the opening-up of the economy. Mr Holness said there were some 10,000 bars in Jamaica.

The following are the conditions outlined, to be followed over the two-week trial or pilot period:

  • Bars will open at 11 a.m.


  • Social and physical distancing must be maintained


  • No more than five persons, including the bar tender, are to be in the bar at any one time.


  • All seating arrangements outside must maintain physical distancing.


  • There must be no seating facility – stools, chairs or benches — inside the bar


  • There must be no group games in the bar.


  • Poker boxes and other gaming machines must be six feet apart


  • There shall be no events held at the bar (such as parties or round robin)


  • Bar doors and windows shall remain open during operating hours.


  • All persons operating and attending the bars should wear face masks


  • Bars must have sanitation stations for washing of hands and sanitizations.


  • Bars must have signage to show protocols


  • Bartenders must wear masks and protective gear

Members of the Police force, Municipal Police and the personnel from the Ministry of Health will inspect the premises and monitor to see these protocols are observed.

Checks will be made to see to it that bars are registered and arrangements will be made for registration.


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