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Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley believes workers in the tourism and travel sector should be given priority access to vaccinations and therapeutics when they become available.

Ms. Mottley expressed this view today as she delivered remarks during the opening ceremony for the two-day virtual meeting of the 58th Directing Council of the Pan American Health Organization.

The Prime Minister told her audience: “As the co-chair of the FCCA Americas Cruise Task Force, I have listened to colleagues across the region who are desperately calling for a safe restart to cruise tourism. As one of the most tourism- and travel-dependent regions of the world, and, therefore, the region whose economies have come to a screeching halt, with zero revenue, we have to find a way to jump start our economies.

“But it must be done in such a way so as to ensure the safety of our workers…. It is for this reason that I have been advocating that the workers in the tourism and travel sector be given priority access to vaccinations and to therapeutics, when they are fully available. This would allow thousands of our workers to get back to work safely in this hemisphere and to get our almost dormant economies awake again.”

Ms. Mottley highlighted the unity of the Americas, saying the sub-regions like the Caribbean Community had looked deep within themselves to search for the best public health measures to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic.  

“The solidarity has been exemplified by the waves of doctors and nurses that our brothers and sisters in Cuba willingly sent to almost every corner of the Americas. And when Spain and Italy called for help, Cuba answered the call. The solidarity has seen us be resourceful in defining protocols which allow us to return to economic activity, while living safely with COVID-19,” she explained.

sharon.austingill-moore@barbados.gov.bb

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