With Election Day just a few days away, the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) has been putting out information on how to vote and our focus is on the day itself. I have already expressed my own views on whether the elections should have been held at this time, especially in light of the irresponsible behavior of many Jamaicans. Now, as COVID-19 numbers soar, the timing seems more “off” than before. Nomination Day, as we know, created a “spike” and although motorcades and most physical pre-election activities are banned, have we thought about Election Night activities? This is usually another time for supporters to get together, whether it is victory celebrations or commiserations.
Meanwhile, the Caribbean Community of Retired Persons (CCRP) has received assurance from the EOJ that special provisions will be made for seniors. Keeping fingers crossed that all goes well!
CCRP Welcomes Special Provisions for Senior Citizens on Election Day
Kingston, Jamaica – Friday, August 28, 2020: The Caribbean Community of Retired Persons (CCRP) welcomes assurances from the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) that senior citizens will be given priority when voting in the General Election on Thursday, September 3, 2020.
“As an elder, I am pleased to hear that we will be allowed to go to the head of the line at polling stations to limit our exposure,” said CCRP Foundation Board Member Mrs Vilma McDonald, adding: “We understand that supervisors will be in charge of assisting us. That is important as we will need help also to navigate the strict COVID-19 protocols that will be in place.”
CCRP is encouraged to hear that political candidates are instructing those who will be transporting our elders to observe all COVID-19 protocols, and to sanitize their vehicles. It is critical that there is a safe mode of transportation to and from the polling station.
“We welcome the news that the National Health Fund will be distributing a number of disposable masks and sanitizer to all candidates,” noted Mrs McDonald. “They should have some in reserve for the elderly they transport as some home-made masks may not fit well and make good use of the hand sanitizers to protect their supporters.”
“I want all my fellow seniors to be able to exercise their right to vote with a feeling of safety and security, during the pandemic,” she added.
Staff at the CCRP head office and regional chapters are now working remotely. They can be contacted at the numbers and email addresses given on the CCRP website: ccrponline.org.