Jamaica’s COVID Election: Protocols for Voting on Election Day


In the early hours of this morning, my WhatsApp pinged and there were the Amendments to the Disaster Risk Management (Enforcement Measures), which had just gone out to the media.

For all those who live in Jamaica and are registered to vote, please take note of these important protocols, to be observed on Election Day, Thursday, September 3, 2020. Polls will open at 7:00 a.m. and close at 5:00 p.m. As talk show host Cliff Hughes said this morning, “This is the COVID Election.”

Questions? There are many that I hope will be answered in the next two days!

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Office of the Prime Minister logo.

For Immediate Release August 30, 2020

Disaster Risk Management (Enforcement Measures) (No. 11) (Amendment) (#4) Order 2020 – Protocols for Voting in the 2020 General Election

The Disaster Risk Management (Enforcement Measures) (No. 11) (Amendment) (No. 4) Order, 2020 has been gazetted to provide for the following protocols for persons voting in the upcoming general election.

1. All persons voting in the general election on September 3, 2020, or on an earlier date if eligible to do so, shall comply with the following requirements at a polling station:

(a) Wear a mask fitted to cover the nose and mouth, except as may otherwise be required by an election officer for the purposes of identification;

(b) Submit to a temperature check before entering the polling station;

(c) Wash or sanitize the hands upon entering the polling station, and at such other times while at the polling station as may be directed by an election officer; and

(d) Maintain social distancing of 6 feet from other persons.

2. Persons who have attained the age of 75 years or more may leave the abode or place of residence for the purpose of voting in the general election on September 3, 2020 or on an earlier date if eligible to vote on such earlier date.

3. Persons who are required to remain in quarantine, other than persons who are required to remain in quarantine in isolation from other persons, may leave quarantine once, during the hours of 7:00 am to 5:00 pm for the purpose of voting in the general election on September 3, 2020, or during the hours of 8:00 am to 4:00 pm on an earlier date if eligible to do so, and shall immediately after voting return to quarantine. In addition, they are required to comply with the following requirements:

(a) Travel only to and from a polling station in private transportation in which –

(i) the driver and all passengers at all times while in the transportation each wear a mask fitted to cover their nose and mouth; and

(ii) the windows remain open and the air conditioning is switched off;

(b) Maintain the maximum practicable social distance from other persons in the transportation;

(c) Comply with all the protocols at the polling station in 1. above; and

(d) If the person develops any symptoms of the SARS – CoV-2 (Coronavirus COVID-19), or any flu-like or respiratory symptoms, immediately so inform an election officer at the polling station.

4. Persons who are required to remain in quarantine, in isolation from other persons, may leave quarantine once, for the purpose of voting during the hours of 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm in the general election on September 3, 2020, or during the hours of 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm on an earlier date if eligible to do so and shall immediately after voting return to quarantine in isolation from other persons. In addition, they are required to comply with the following requirements:

(a) Before leaving quarantine, notify the Ministry of Health and Wellness at 888-ONE- LOVE (888-663-5683), 888-754-7792, 876-542-5998, or 876-542-6006;

(b) Except as otherwise directed by an election officer, for the duration of the time when the person is out of quarantine, wear a mask fitted to cover the nose and mouth, a face shield, gloves and a disposable gown;

(c) As far as is reasonably practicable, for the duration of the time when the person is out of quarantine, maintain social distancing of 6 feet from other persons;

(d) Travel only to and from a polling station in private transportation in which –

(i) there are no other persons except for the driver, who shall wear a mask fitted to cover the driver’s nose and mouth; and

(ii) the windows remain open and the air conditioning is switched off;

(e) Wash or sanitize the hands before leaving the place of quarantine and before and after entering the transportation;

(f) Maintain the maximum practicable social distance from the driver in the transportation; and

(g) Comply with all the protocols at the polling station in 1. above.

–30–

Contact: Communications Unit-OPM
Tel: 926-0244, 927-4101 Email: opmnews@opm.gov.jm/officeoftheprimeministernews@gmail.com
Website: http://www.opm.gov.jm Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/jamaicahouse Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/opmjamaica

vote
An electoral worker (right) speaking with police personnel waiting to cast their ballots at the polling station located at the Elletson Road Police Station in Kingston August 31, 2020. The police, military, and election day workers are among 46,777 special-services electors who are eligible to vote today. (Photo: Rudolph Brown/Gleaner)

 


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