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COVID Rules FAILING! 965 new infections during six weeks of tough restrictions



#TurksandCaicos, February 16, 2021 – The financial fall out will continue and so will the curfews and restrictions despite there being no evidence that they are actually working for the Turks and Caicos Islands.

“Currently there are 312 active cases; 193 in Providenciales; 42 in Grand Turk; 44 in North Caicos; nine in South Caicos; 23 in Middle Caicos and one in Ambergris Cay.  Three-hundred and twelve active cases is the lowest we have been to since January 22 when we had 356,” said Edwin Astwood, Minister of Health during an evening press conference on Monday.

While this figure is lower, it does not mask the fact that the two worst months for Covid-19 so far in TCI, are January and February 2021; when restrictions were the most stringent they have been since the country re-opened to tourism on July 22, 2020.

On December 1, 2020 the Turks and Caicos Islands stood at 750 confirmed positives for the coronavirus.

On January 1, 2021 it rose by 158 new cases to chart 908 infections overall.

On February 1, 2021 the Turks and Caicos surged to 1,504 cases of Covid-19; which reflects a 596 patient leap.

Two weeks into February and already there are 370 new infections and the country’s deadliest day marked on February 12 with three individuals lost to Covid-19 in the span of 24-hours.

The Minister’s commentary only highlighted the upward trend of infections for Turks and Caicos; which was last month described by Dr. Shandey Malcolm, National Epidemiologist as “catastrophic”.

Dr. Malcolm characterized the trend as “distressing.”

Still the restrictions will continue and are particularly hard, this time around on restaurants, bars, lounges and commercial boaters.

No dine in service is permitted and no one is permitted to lounge or participate in gaming activities.

The rules announced by the Health Minister follow the theory that residents are catching Covid-19 at parties and social gatherings; supposedly at these lounges and on boat parties.

Again, there is little to no evidence provided to support this rationale.

“It’s to try and reduce the persons socializing together.  That is (why) these measures are taken into place, to try and reduce social or person to person contact,” explained Minister Astwood.

Turks and Caicos returns to 8 p.m. business closure and a 9 p.m. curfew as of today, February 16; this new raft of regulations expire on March 3, 2021.


Environmental Health Department Recognizes Caribbean Mosquito Awareness Week 2023



Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands May 12, 2023 – Mosquito Awareness Week is fast approaching, and its an important initiative which was established with the approval of CARICOM in 2014 to raise awareness about the link between mosquitoes and the diseases they transmit and to strengthen initiatives aimed at eliminating mosquito breeding sites. Caribbean Mosquito Awareness Week will be observed this year from May 8th – 14th, 2023 under the theme “Small bite, big threat” and slogan “Beat the buzz: Prevent, Protect, Control”.

The Aedes aegypti mosquito, which is present in the Turks and Caicos Islands, can spread diseases such as Dengue, Chikungunya and Zika.

During the Month of May, the Environmental Health Department will be discussing ways to control vector populations and prevent the spread of diseases. This can include using insect repellent, eliminating breeding grounds, and properly disposing of waste.

Vector Control Awareness Month in the TCI is an extension of Mosquito Awareness Week, recognizing the threat posed by mosquitoes and is a reminder that we all have a role to play in preventing the spread of vector-borne diseases. Let’s work together to keep our communities healthy and safe.

For additional information, please contact the Environmental Health Department on 1649-338-2143/44.

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Social Services hosts Special Event for TCI Younger Ladies



By Dana Malcolm

Staff writer



#TurksandCaicos, May 2, 2023 – Another edition of the government’s mentorship program “The Lady in Me” was held this week. This time young ladies in Providenciales were the ones being treated. The program targets at-risk adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17 years old.

Photos of the beautiful setup shared with our news team show branded gifts waiting for the girls as they spent the two-day event sponsored by UNICEF focusing on how to cultivate healthy physical, mental, emotional, and behavioral well-being.

Students from various schools arrived in uniforms immaculately pressed for the event put on by the Department of Social Services.

Acting Governor Anya Williams was in attendance and expressed faith that the initiative would cause true change.

“It was a pleasure to share with them my insight into the importance of making the right decisions in their youth, which will help to shape their futures and why they should see and value themselves as their greatest asset and to hear from them their goals, aspirations and the challenges that are currently being experienced by our younger generations,” she said.

In introducing the program the Government had said it was aiming to help participants: “examine the adolescence values, competencies, belief systems, inner feelings, motivations, critical thinking, and communication skills,” in order to “build their self-awareness and interpersonal relationships to strengthen their self-esteem— to create a sense of pride and enhance self-respect, self-worth, and self-esteem as they mature and improve personally and professionally.”

The Department said the event was expected to impact 100 girls.

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What’s at LJMMA? President explains snazzy equipment 



Dana Malcolm 

Staff Writer 



#TheBahamas, March 27, 2023 – Situated on a Cay of its own, the LJM Maritime Academy (LJMMA) is the Bahamas’ only school of its kind and with sponsorships from Campbell Shipping, Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Carnival Cruises, Disney Cruises, and more it boasts an extremely well-equipped campus. The Turks and Caicos Community College (TCICC) is now partnering with the LJMMA to bring those amenities to TCI students through TCICC.

Brendamae Cleare, President of the institution, joined in on a maritime stakeholder meeting introducing the partnership to the Turks and Caicos’ residents on Tuesday, March 21, detailing everything that the LJMMA had to offer.

“We have– classrooms, workshops, a bridge simulator room, a crane simulator, an engine simulator and we also have a GMDSS simulator and radar simulator as well,” she explained.

The simulator building was commissioned to the tune of $30 million and is only in phase one. Also included alongside the fancy simulators, which give students hands-on experience with the boat engines and cranes that they will work with in the future, there are temporary administrative offices, libraries, nurse’s stations and more.

Other buildings on the Cay include, a firefighting simulator and the school even has lifeboat simulators, which mimic what it would be like pushing the lifeboat off the side of a huge vessel and maneuvering it in the ocean.

The Maritime Academy was birthed in 2011 when executives at Campbell Shipping including Lowell J. Mortimer (which is the only Bahamian-owned shipping company Cleare says), realized that there were no Bahamians working on their ships and were determined to change that.

“We had the college of the Bahamas, which is now the University of the Bahamas. We had a technical and vocational institution. We had banking and tourism colleges, but nothing like maritime but [we said] why not maritime?”

And the LJMMA so was born, named after its founder Mortimer. In its first year, it fielded over 180 applications and accepted just over 40 students. It is semi-regimented, which means strict rules for students, just as they would have to abide by on vessels.

The institution is accredited by the National Accreditation and Equivalency Council of the Bahamas, the Bahamas Maritime Authority, the Institute of Materials, Minerals, Mining and others.

Cleare said the vision of the school was to become a globally recognized institution of excellence, in maritime education and training.

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