COVID-19 update and press conference – February 4, 2021. (PMO)

From all indications, Barbadians are handling well the second lockdown period, dubbed a “national pause”, and are complying with the latest COVID-19 directive. 

This was confirmed by Attorney General Dale Marshall this evening, as he spoke during a COVID-19 update and press conference.

He stated that as the country prepared for the first lockdown last year, there were “huge” lines at supermarkets; there was uncertainty about the availability of certain items, and just as is the case now, there were questions about what was or was not allowed, why hardware stores were not open and what would happen if a plumbing problem occurred.

However, the Attorney General explained: “I think that the beginning of the answer to all these questions is always to look at our overriding objective. And the overriding objective in this lockdown, like the last time, is that we reduce the amount of human-to-human interaction, the amount of human-to-human contact, so as to reduce significantly the risk of the spread of COVID.”

He continued: “When we were last in lockdown, the COVID numbers were one today, two tomorrow, numbers that even then we found them to be extremely disconcerting and Barbadians then handled the measures well and from all that I have been able to observe to the leadup to this period, and certainly, as we have commenced this period, I think that Barbadians have handled it well.” 

Mr. Marshall added that he did not think that a curfew arrangement was something that Barbadians should become comfortable with, pointing out that “it is an uneasy feeling not being able to leave your home”.

He noted: “Barbadians complied with the directive on the last occasion and this is only day two, but there is no indication to me that there is any lack of compliance or any lack of understanding.…When we prepared this directive, we avoided legalese….We avoided the… hereafters and those things because we want to present a document that when it was completed, the average Barbadian can pick it up and read it….  I think Barbadians understand what is required of them and I think they have been, for the last two days, and will continue to meet the expectations of the Government side.”

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