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Blue Tokens on the Greenest Day of the year, Celebrate Earth Day at IGA

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#Providenciales, April 20, 2019 – Turks and Caicos – You will be able to use your reusable bags and earn tokens at Graceway IGA on Earth Day, this coming Monday April 22, 2019; the grocery store is calling it ‘Staying Blue’.

As the Turks and Caicos Islands fast approach a radical change for environmental protection, which is an end to single use plastic bags as of May 1, there has been very little public education; however, the DECR announced that TCIG’s education efforts will ramp up as of Monday.

Graceway Supermarkets said: “We believe that the key to a cleaner, eco-friendlier TCI is re-using everything we have. This includes bags, clothing, containers and so many of the things we throw away these days.”

At IGA on Monday, there will be a prominent display set up in the foyer of the store and shoppers will be able to donate the tokens they earn for bringing their own bags to a charity of their choice.

Graceway Supermarkets explained, “Every time you bring your own bags or buy a re-usable bag you will get a token, use the token at checkout to vote for your favorite action for Graceway Communities to take, and we’ll take the action.”

On Wednesday May 1, shoppers will no longer get those plastic bags that they are used to for carrying home their store purchases.  This change, in order to reduce the impact of the toxic plastics on the environment, will take some getting used to and it may eventually mean higher bills at check out.

At Graceway Supermarkets, the increase named the, ‘Blue Ocean fee’ will come eventually and is described as nominal.

“We know this initial period will be difficult for our customers so we’re providing free alternative paper bags in all our stores. But from 1 August we will start a pilot scheme to implement a charge on single-use bags at checkout. Any money raised will all go to Graceway Communities for actions to help the environment and the TCI.”

Single-use paper bags will be provided temporarily at no charge at their six stores in Providwenciales and Grand Turk, but Graceway shared that paper bags are significantly more expensive and their goal is to help consumers shift their behavior.

“Real change needs a change in our attitudes and behavior. By putting a nominal charge on single-use bags we will drastically reduce how many are used and increase the use of re-usable bags to help the environment.”

For the grocery store conglomerate, the plan is bigger than just the ban on single use plastic bags.

“We have moved to phase out these items in our deli’s and cafe. The real problem is with littering, so we encourage both education and change in behavior on littering, as well as re-use of all types of items. We would encourage a discussion on the topic of what sectors are most polluting in the TCI (power, vehicles, desalination, construction effluent).”

Shoppers are welcomed to Graceway IGA on Monday for the Earth Day celebration.

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Caribbean News

TCI Premier and Delegation visit NCI in Jamaica

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#Manchester, Jamaica, 14 August 2022 – The Honourable Charles Washington Misick, Premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands, and his delegation have arrived at the Northern Caribbean University (NCU) in Central Jamaica.The Premier will give the address at the second commencement ceremony and will be conferred with an Honorary Doctor of Commerce Degree.  The Premier completed high school at West Indies College which is now NCU more than 50 years ago.  Premier Misick and his delegation are on a four day visit to Jamaica.The Office of the Premier and Public Policy will bring commencement live on its Facebook page at 2PM EST.The Premier’s delegation includes: First Lady, Mrs. Delthia Russell-Misick; Hon. Arlington Musgrove, Minister of Immigration and Border Services; Hon. Rachel Taylor, Minister of Education, Labour, Employment and Customer Service; Mr. Wesley Clerveaux, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Labour, Employment and Customer Service; Ms. Althea Been, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Immigration and Border Services; Mr. Miquel Swann, Deputy Permanent Secretary, Office of the Premier and Public Policy; Mr. Edwin Taylor, Commissioner of Labour; and Mr. Bentley Johnson Aide De Camp.

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Bahamas News

Polio is back; 65 million missed shots in another COVID fall out

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#USA, August 4, 2022 – For the first time in almost a decade a new case of polio was recorded in the United States. The case which ended in paralysis emphasizes the danger the region faces as vaccination levels drop to 30-year lows.

The World Health Organization warned in early July explained that vaccination in the region of the Americas and the rest of world was dropping rapidly because of various spin off effects precipitated by the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Over 65 million infants missed out on basic vaccines in the last three years thanks to disruptions in routine healthcare, lockdowns and other circumstances. The effects are already being felt as once eradicated disease like measles and polio are once again emerging.

The Pan American Health Organization announced earlier this year the Americas are now facing another measles outbreak after having been declared free of the disease in 2016.

Dr. Jarvis Barbosa, Assistant director of PAHO said vaccination levels are now as low as they were in 1994 for measles and polio and Brazil has had several outbreaks of measles.

In the case of the United States an unvaccinated young adult developed the disease after contact with another individual vaccinated with a live version of the vaccine.

The breakout polio case in the US sent shockwaves across the country because of the severe nature of the disease. Polio is an extremely dangerous disease with no known cure. It causes paralysis in as many as 1 in 200 infected and that paralysis is permanent.

Normally very few school age children would be at risk in the Americas as the vaccine is required to start school but with the gap in vaccinations many more children are now at risk.

Polio was one of the most feared diseases of the 20th century, paralyzing and killing hundreds of thousands, especially children. Thankfully vaccinated individuals are not at risk and as such the WHO is advising that the best way to protect against polio is vaccination.

 

Photo Caption:  Child in Benin takes Polio vaccine, UNSDG

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News

New Rules for Turks & Caicos JPs

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TurksandCaicos, August 5, 2022 – Rules governing Justices of the Peace in the Turks and Caicos are now significantly stricter after the passing of the amendment to the Magistrates Amendment Bill in July 2022.

Despite the fact that Justices of the Peace are allowed the same powers as a magistrate previously the only requirement for their appointment was the discretion of the Governor and that they be under 65-years-old.

That power has now been transferred from the Governor to the Chief Justice.

Justices of the peace have always by law been allowed to receive complaints, sign charges and issue warrants for the apprehension of persons charged with criminal offenses. They can also issue search warrants summons and administer oaths.

Considering the potentially unchecked execution of these powers, the attorney general’s chambers lobbied for a change in the system.

“These are very wide powers and there is no framework for the supervision and regulation of the whole of justices of the peace in the Turks and Caicos Islands.”

The amendment rectified this and the Chief Justice now has the power to make binding rules and regulations governing the appointment of JPs, a code of conduct disciplinary action and orientation and periodic training for JPs.

In addition, to maintain separation of powers the governor will be stripped of the power to disallow laws made by resident magistrates. That power now belongs to the Chief Justice.

Rhondalee Braithwaite-Knowles, TCI Attorney General maintained that the amendment was short but necessary.

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