Turks and Caicos Premier says nation ‘elated’ over removal from Zika list; praises CARPHA and CARICOM
#Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands – October 20, 2018 – A record 30 million stay-over visitors to the Caribbean region in 2017 did well to mask the damage that a classification by the World Health Organization, as a region still laden with cases of the terrifying Zika virus, was having upon travel bookings.
Ever since the emergence of the virus within our hemisphere, there has been fear about the mosquito borne disease, which can result in, among other things babies being born with microcephaly or a small head.
It is a frightening risk that pregnant women and women wanting to become pregnant have steered clear of taking, especially once the American Centers for Disease Control added the Caribbean to the damning list. It became immediately clear that Zika’s prevalence in our region – whether perceived or real – loomed largely in the decision of where people chose to spend their holidays.
Suffice it to say, CARPHA’s announcement on Thursday was a welcomed one for the Caribbean, including the Turks and Caicos Islands.
CARPHA’s statement explained: “This removal by the WHO comes on the heels of data released by CARPHA, giving evidence that the Zika virus transmission in the Caribbean had been interrupted for over 12 months, or was at undetectable levels, thereby posing very little risk to residents and visitors to the Region. This was matched by data shared with CARPHA by Canada, the United Kingdom, Europe and the United States of America, which showed that no Zika had been detected for over 12 months in travelers returning from the Caribbean to their countries.”
A year free of Zika and a letter penned to demand a re-classification has made all the difference for the region and CARPHA member states. The member countries are now removed from Category 1, where Zika is prevalent to Category 3, which means there is no Zika transmission.
“Last year I had the opportunity to engage with travel agents from around the world and was told of the importance of having the Turks and Caicos removed from the list, especially as my Government through the Change Document, to market the Turks and Caicos Islands as a wedding destination.”
Premier Sharlene Robinson in a Friday media meeting explained that it was a team effort including the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the US Consulate, however Robinson gave highest commendation to the diligence of the Caribbean Public Health Agency, CARPHA and CARICOM.
“Over the past year there have been efforts by my government to have the TCI removed, having had no new transmissions recorded and having seen other countries removed,” the Premier added, “But are thrilled at the positive results of the advocacy led by CARPHA and CARICOM which resulted in the removal of the entire classification.”
The Premier revealed that the tourism and travel agents of the Turks and Caicos Islands welcome the development.
In 2016, statistics shed an unfavorable light on Latin America and the Caribbean. An April 2017 report in NPR or National Public Radio online quoted the Centers for Disease Control. Figures exposed that in 2016 there were 1600 cases of Zika reported in pregnant women in the United States. Fourteen Latin American and Caribbean countries were cited as the places the women had visited and were considered the origin of the disease.
“Of those women with laboratory evidence of Zika virus, there were 77 reported pregnancy losses and 51 babies born with birth defects, including 43 babies with microcephaly or brain abnormalities. Other babies had eye abnormalities or neural tube defects,” said Dr. Anne Schuchat, acting director of the CDC at the time of the article.
The Turks and Caicos Ministry of Health reported in July that the country had gone 18-months with no new cases of Zika reported.
Wal Registre’s Impressive Rise at BTC
PROVIDENCIALES, Turks & Caicos Islands: When Wal Registre started his career at Beaches Turks and Caicos (BTC) on October 25, 1997 as a bartender, little did he know that 25 years after, he would have risen to the post of payroll administrator within the same organisation.
The Raymond Gardiner High School graduate was always good at accounting and mathematics and had the dream of excelling in the hospitality industry in an area that would best fit his passion and academic strength.
Having been promoted to bar supervisor in 1999, Wal’s vision for growth was still active as he recognised that being a team member at Beaches Turks and Caicos would allow him to excel beyond his comfort zone. Following the completion of a number of courses with the Sandals Corporate University (SCU), he transitioned to the Cost Control unit in the Accounting Department as the cost control clerk.
Wal pointed out that his ability to grow within the company was largely due to his commitment to excellence. The SCU courses that were offered gave him the added training needed to build on what he was able to learn on the job and from his mentors.
“At BTC, training is very important to each employee. There are many opportunities for professional development and with the guidance from the Learning and Development team, and the leaders within the company, team members can truly grow,” Registre added.
One of Wal’s colleagues, Janet King, noted, “Wal’s commitment serves as an example to every team member here. His ability to grow from an entry level position to where he is now shows that everyone can succeed once they put their minds to it.”
While expressing his commitment to his profession, Wal’s dedication and discipline are traits that he values and chooses to pass on to those he leads. In sharing his advice to younger professionals seeking to enter the industry, he noted, “this organisation believes in quality work life balance that will allow each team member valuable time with family. This period helps me to maintain a bond with my family and explore the world. Training within this company is available for everyone and the ability to grow professionally is dependent on each person having the right attitude to grow.”
Header:Wal Registre, Payroll Administrator at Beaches Turks and Caicos makes final checks as he goes through documents at his desk at the resort
Insert: Anna Francis, Accountant in the Finance department at Beaches Turks and Caicos and Wal Registre, Payroll Administrator at the resort pause from discussing work related items to smile for the camera
Special Needs Unit Students at Thelma Lightbourne Primary School recognised by BTC
PROVIDENCIALES, Turks & Caicos Islands – Parents and students from the Special Education Unit at the Thelma Lightbourne Primary School were recently recognized by the Beaches Turks and Caicos team during a special session at the institution as part of autism awareness activities.
Children’s Activities Manager Fedeline Julien shared, “educating students, parents, teachers and other adults about the best practices of dealing with children with autism is needed especially in our homes and schools. Children who are autistic do things differently and should be treated with patience and care.”
Robin Cox Foster, principal of the school said, “the partnership between Beaches Turks and Caicos and our school is always welcome. As the only resort on island that is an autism certified centre, they were readily available to share with our students and their parents. The involvement of the Sesame Street character, the presentations from the Kids Camp team to the parents allowed those present to appreciate their roles in being change agents for autism.”
Caring for a child with special needs was highlighted as an opportunity to create a closer bond between child and parent/caregivers.
Walter Moore, who has a son on the spectrum shared, “being able to deal with the many challenges of a special needs child will assist parents in being more patient and creative in how they care for a child. My son and I are best friends. He is comfortable talking with me about anything and I have to learn how to respect his likes and dislikes and create an environment that makes him happy.”
Beaches Turks and Caicos’ Kids Camp is an Advanced Certified Autism Centre which ensures that team members have the required knowledge, skills, temperament, and expertise to cater to all children. The resort offers age-specific programmes for infants, toddlers, pre-teens and teens.
Header: Tanya Swann (left), Director of Sales, Groups and Conventions at Beaches Turks and Caicos introduces the team of volunteers who were present while Robin Cox-Foster, school principal looks on
1st Insert: Walter Moore (left) Beaches Turks and Caicos team member shares a moment with his son (right) and Sesame Street character Sesame Street
2nd Insert: Some members of the Beaches Turks and Caicos Sandals Foundation team share a moment at the Thelma Lightbourne Primary School during a presentation to the institution
PUBLIC STATEMENT – ROAD CLOSURES ON GRAND TURK
#TurksandCaicos, June 2, 2023 – The Ministry of Physical Planning and Infrastructure Development in collaboration with the Water Undertaking, Ministry of Home Affairs would like to advise the Public of the closure on the intersection of Airport Road and Osbourne Road area as part of the on-going Pipe Laying project on Grand Turk. The works are expected to last not exceeding 24 hours. The road will be closed for traffic during the period of June 03, 2023 from 7:00 Am to 7:00 PM.
- Vehicles heading North bound, turn right to Osbourne and turn Left to Barrack Hill Road.
- Vehicles heading South bound, turn right to Ponce de Leon Street and turn left to Palm Grove Drive
TRAFFIC CONTROL PLAN
҉NOTICE OF ROAD CLOSURE TO FACILITATE INFRASTRUCTURE WORKS ON SATURDAY 3RD OF JUNE 2023 FROM 7AM TO 7PM PROJECT: UPGRADING OF WATER DISTIBUTION FACILITIES IN GRAND TURK TR 21/55 C
FROM THE MINISTRY OF PHYSICAL PLANNING
AND INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENT
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