Curfew Change, Max 10 People At Gatherings

March 20, 2021

The curfew time changing to 11pm until 5am and the permitted gathering size being reduced to 10 persons are among the new regulations just announced, which are set to come into effect from 6am tomorrow morning [March 21] – with the Government also confirming that there are 16 new positive cases.

Covid Square march 20 2021

“We must act now,” said Premier David Burt today, announcing changes in the Public Health Regulations which will come into effect from 6 am tomorrow morning. “Cabinet met earlier today and following a full briefing from the Minister of Health determined to roll back the current measures to what was in place in mid-December.”

“The Premier confirmed that:

  • The curfew would now be in place from 11pm until 5am
  • Clubs and bars will be prohibited from serving patrons indoors, and outdoor service is for table service only
  • Restaurants, bars and clubs are permitted a maximum of 6 persons at any one table
  • All personal care services will require a mask to be worn at all times
  • Gyms must ensure patrons keep 10ft apart when indoors
  • The permitted gathering size is reduced to 10 persons
  • Indoor religious services will reduce to 20% of the site’s capacity, and outdoor services, including funerals, would be restricted to 20 persons.
  • The current 8 pm boating curfew would remain in place

Minister of Health Kim Wilson said: “As the number of active cases is increasing so significantly, these proactive measures are required from a public health perspective to prevent further cases. The epidemiological results of the most recent cases indicate that almost all of our cases are of the UK Variant, which we know to be more contagious and more virulent.

“We cannot risk this current outbreak powered by the UK strain becoming the 3rd wave of infections in Bermuda. The measures are serious, but this action will enable us to slow the transmission of the virus while we work to continue our vaccination programme, which is vital in defeating the virus. ”

The Premier added: “The increased number of children now testing positive is concerning, and the swift action taken to test entire schools reflects our determination to do all we can to keep our young people safe. It is beyond frustrating to think that we are still dealing with the consequences of the reckless actions of a few in the community.

“Thankfully, one year on from the start of this pandemic, we not only have the testing capacity to isolate positive cases, but we have a vaccination programme that is steadily providing much-needed protection to the most vulnerable.”

Copy of Covid Square march 21 2021

Minister Wilson noted: “The public health advice for the safe operation of schools has mostly been followed, and I commend our teachers and principals who have supported the recent testing effort and through whose leadership we have been able to quickly isolate positive cases and continue with classroom learning.”

Recognizing the potential economic impact of these changes, Premier Burt indicated that he had asked the Minister of Finance to renew the supplementary unemployment benefit support for affected workers. “All affected employees of businesses that are unable to open will receive payments up to a maximum of $1500 this week, which will cover the 3 weeks of closure. Any affected businesses will be eligible for grants to cover expenses and overheads as was done by the BEDC in December.”

The Premier concluded: “Our whole approach is about balance. We have to strike the right balance between protecting the Island and keeping this economy open, and moving towards recovery. We can and must do both. The actions we are taking today are proactive, and this pandemic has shown that early action prevents longer periods of restrictions.

“The highly contagious UK strain, which is the source of this outbreak, must be met with early action, and that is the action we are taking today. The restrictions announced today will be in effect for at least three weeks. I continue to salute the people of Bermuda who have summoned the inner strength to meet the demands of these unique times.

“We are doing well as a country, and our successes are in no way diminished by our current circumstances. The Ministry of Health, from the Minister to those vaccinating our people, is leading an effort on all fronts to ensure that we can achieve that balance. We are well-positioned to meet this most recent challenge and to continue the work of rebuilding this economy.”

Note I: One line [about benefits] of the text above has been amended with officials sending a clarification, explaining that “affected employees of businesses that are unable to open will receive payments up to a maximum of $1500 this week for the three week closure.”

Note II: The Government sent another clarification, text above amended to reflect that “Gyms must ensure patrons keep 10ft apart when indoors.”

Update: The full Public Health COVID 19 Emergency Powers Amendment No. 5 Regulations 2021 follow below [PDF here]:

covid-19 divider 1

As the island and world deals with the Covid-19 pandemic, we are doing our best to provide timely and accurate information, and you can find more information on the links below.

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Comments (43)

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  1. Red Pill says:

    Panic over science again!

    • Cotton Wool Brigade says:

      Too true

      • Fred says:

        Ah, seriously?
        Just get vaccinated and we can all get back to normal.
        Why is that so damn hard??

  2. Sandgrownan says:

    Start arresting and fining people Burt. You are making us all pay for the actions of a selfish few. Grow a pair Emperor.

    • Loquat tree says:

      Maybe they could set up special court days to speed up the process and also fast track the set penalty notice system.

      • Cotton Wool Brigade says:

        With gatherings now limited to 10, there aren’t enough days in the week to get through the ever growing list of offenders.

        • Sandgrownan says:

          If Burt is too cowardly, publish the names then.

          • Ringmaster says:

            The changes just reinforce the futility of the Government’s approach. If the previous rules were not followed, and no penalties were given out, making them more restrictive will make no difference. Either enforce the rules, and name and shame to get the attention of those who will not follow, or remove them.

            • sandgrownan says:

              Publish names and leave the penalties to those who are now, again, furloughed and unable to feed their families. How about kids unable to attend class, or play sport. We’re all held hostage to these twats and a lack lustre, deer in the headlights government who couldn’t manage their way out of a paper bag.

              All because of a few selfish people the PLP government refuse to hold accountable. But that just about sums Bermuda up doesn’t it, no-one is ever held accountable.


    • Southampton says:

      I agree with Sandgrownan. Do not be so easy on these idiots that will not adhere on the restrictions.
      Government needs to become harder.

    • LOL (original) says:

      So you are for an authoritarian Government then?

      LOL you people can give your freedoms if you want I’ll fight to keep mine though.

      • sandgrownan says:

        It’s a public health crisis for which some simple precautions can help mitigate. It’s not about authoritarianism, it’s common sense.

        The fact that the actions of a few, impact us all and the government do nothing is very typically Bermudian.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      “Start arresting and fining people Burt.”

      No, our system is set up specifically so that politician cannot order the police to arrest anyone.

      If you want that sort of system you might try Haiti or Russia.

  3. kevin says:

    And we need to thank all of you who have ignored the rules and if there is any justice you will all pay a hefty price and some you hopefully you lose your freedom for some time as we are all paying the price for your childish antics.

  4. Wing nut says:

    Now lets name and shame all the intelligent ones we have to thank.
    Hopefullynwenwill see charges soon.

  5. Pissed Off for Sure. says:

    Thank you stupid ass @@@@@ for having parties and NOT adhering to simple rules. Thank you for inconveniencing us that have followed the rules. For your ignorance we suffer cause your lot dont care.Its time to SERIUOSLY FINE the ignorant few. Bet a few 10000.00 fines would possibly make them think

    • Busybee says:

      They don’t know how to enforce rules let alone collect fines!

  6. Franklin Jr says:

    “The brilliance of Burt” shining bright

    Who ya covering for?

    • Franklin Jr says:

      To be clear, I really don’t care if it’s Ewart Brown or the reanimated corpse of Sir George Somers… OUT WITH IT!!

      • Bernews, Please correct me if I am wrong here, Franklin Jr. say’s here “The Brilliance of Burt” shining bright, Who are you covering for?, Then he goes on to say, To be clear, I really don’t care if it’s Ewart Brown or the reanimated corpse of Sir George Somers. Come Out With it..

        I could be wrong, but this is a suggestive statement that boarder lines being a libelous statement and even though many may feel this same approach to some degree or another, do we really have the freedom to make suggestive comments of this nature, especially in using the name of Dr. Ewart Brown, because of the present situation before the courts.

        I find this comment very distasteful in as much that this comment made by this young man sounds as if he is accusing the Premier of covering up something for someone else whiles in a public office, if the rules and laws have changed, please let me know, so I can get a list of mud slinging that I can do also, but this line or statement needs to be checked, and I hope you print this in connection with the comment that I feel should not have been allowed, but maybe the rules, regulations, or laws have changed.

        • Franklin Jr says:

          Simply a well-known figure in Bermuda.

          I don’t even know if he’s on island.

          Interesting response though, am I accidentally onto something?

        • saud says:

          Aww, duane, poor snowflake.

          Everything you post is ‘anti…’.
          You’re homophobic, racist and xenophobioc…and now, you reveal what a snowflake you are.

  7. Busybee says:

    So those ignoring the rules will continue to ignore the rules, while the rest of the tourism and economy is on the verge of bankruptcy.!

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      Yup. It’s been that way for a while. The Road Traffic Act no longer applies to motorcycles. Have you not noticed that?

      • Toodle-oo says:

        Try getting on a motorbike for a change and you’ll see that it doesn’t apply to cars or trucks either.

  8. Ringmaster says:

    The simple fact is the Government has no idea how to proceed. Restrictions don’t apply to them so they don’t care. Where are these on island infections occurring? From the illegal parties? The parties where the police turn up and the people refuse to cooperate? That used to be obstruction of justice and a penalty. now it seems the police just say OK no problem.
    Same as the roads. A free for all with no consequences, no policing, no enforcement and anarchy. Total failure from the Premier down.

  9. Ringmaster says:

    Burt and Wilson have exceeded the Peter principle. Way past their competence level. All talk and no penalties for the few ignoring the rules, which includes their own MPs.

    • Mary Lodge says:

      I am proud and grateful for the excellent leadership of Premier Burt and Minister Wilson.
      Thank you and your colleagues.

      • NOT says:

        sorry but lost faith now. Something could of and should have been done about the non compliance selfish pricks that flout the law but lets guess aint a damn thing will be done to the curfew or party number breakers. So now its all window dressing BS. Yeah lets wait till we can get it thru the legal progress. FI. they broke the law they should be PROSECUTED it goes on their record so be it they broke the law not 99% of us who are paying for their discretion. BS had enough.

      • Question says:

        But if you break the law, and contribute to covid spread, the police can’t tell anyone that is a criminal offence (which it currently is). You have to treat it as a summary offence (which it isn’t). Burt wants to go soft on covid law breakers, like he does with all law breakers, just a couple of months after whining that the laws should be “strictly enforced”.
        And Wilson is a part-timer who knows everything she reads out, and nothing more. She’ll make up nonsensical answers or get back to you on the rest.

      • Mark says:

        Including their idiotic decision to allow more people inside a church than OUTSIDE for a funeral? Makes no sense.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      Sorry, Ringmaster, but I must disagree with you. I think Minister Kim Wilson is doing a superb job.

      • Question says:

        Oh come on. She is a part-timer and only knows what is written down in front of her.

        • Joe Bloggs says:

          Apparently I hold Kim Wilson in higher regard than you do.

  10. Triangle Drifter says:

    This Government has made it very clear. They are not interested in enforcing their own rules & they sure are not interested in penalising anyone for ignoring those simple rules.

    30-6. Did you make the right choice? Are you back to work? If you are in the hospitality industry how are your employment prospects looking this year?

    Meanwhile the majority are being made to suffer for the antics of a few & we have a spineless Government doing nothing about it.

  11. Mephisto says:

    With new variants # of active cases will probably no longer be a benchmark for scaling back restrictions.

    I suspect the island will be looking at % of vaccinated before opening the island back up more.

    Please register and get your vaccines.

  12. Sandgrownan says:

    As a result, youth rugby now cancelled.

    Hope you selfish pricks that just “had to have a set” are satisfied. Wankers.

  13. Cleaver says:

    I am of the same belief it is definitely time that persons who are not adhering to the rules that are put in place need to be fully prosecuted by the law. No more excuses… There is also the ones that believe that this is all just a hoax so they will not abide by the rules either.
    My thoughts and prayers go out to the Minister of Health and her amazing team who have worked tirelessly for over a year in so many capacities to help control this pandemic, well done you are all amazing.

    • Dejavu says:

      Are you being serious if the one’s who make the rules don’t even follow them themselves, what would make you think it’s really that serious. Do you really think they would risk their families lives, of course not. So obviously it’s not really a deadly disease

  14. Me says:

    I would like to see what SailGP and the Govs so called safety plan is going to look like now?

  15. If we are limited to 10 people in a gathering, with social distancing, This really makes no sense. We should be shutting down all stores and gas stations, because the staff themselves in most places is more than 10 persons and then you have the customers, Who really thinks up this stuff.

    March 21st 10 people, but April 21st our boarders are wide open for America’s Cup With a Twist, Mr. Burt shut down the Hood But will open up for Forty Thieves Rebrand.

    • Joe Bloggs says:

      “Mr. Burt shut down the Hood But will open up for Forty Thieves Rebrand.”

      Such is politics.

  16. Right says:

    Government, please consider paving our roads and highways while the people are down on curfew nights as we have very terrible roads that are ripping out transportation apart. Admit it, our infrastructure is messed up and that’s how other countries manage to pave roads, night time. So while you have us on lockdown, make use of it an repair and fix our roads!!!!!