JIS News

Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says players in the tourism industry are at risk of losing out on potential visitors and foreign earnings if front-line staff fail to support the national COVID-19 vaccination programme.

Mr. Bartlett told journalists at a tablet and laptop handover ceremony at the Holiday Inn Resort and Spa in St. James on October 8 it is imperative that workers in the sector be fully vaccinated, as they are the first line of contact for visitors.

“I want that point to be very clear to everybody. This Minister is not afraid to say that your place of business will not be on the list if your staff is not vaccinated, because I don’t want to expose you to the virus and I don’t want to expose the visitors who come to Jamaica to the virus,” the Minister said.

“So, the best way to make sure that doesn’t happen is for you (tourism workers) to be vaccinated,” he added.

The Minister pointed out that approximately 60 per cent of the country’s tourism workers are currently vaccinated. He, however, indicated that this figure pales in comparison to the industry’s target countries where the majority of the overall population is fully vaccinated.

“We have been going hard in the industry, we are probably at about 60 per cent now. That’s still low because coming out of Canada they are averaging 70 per cent in the country overall and in Ontario, where we have a large pull from, they are now 90 per cent vaccinated,” Mr. Bartlett outlined.

“These destinations are not going to be comfortable coming to us with low vaccination [numbers], especially among workers. So, it is not a matter of choice, it is a matter of imperative,” he added.

Mr. Bartlett is urging Jamaicans, particularly those working in the tourism sector, to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

The Minister said he will be working alongside tour operators, hoteliers, craft vendors, travel agents, transportation operators and other front-line workers in the industry to increase the overall vaccination numbers.

“We have to take a decision, all of us, as to how we live and how we operate. If the industry is to recover properly, then we all have to be healthy and the sign of healthiness for us is at least that we have the protection against the virus, which is the vaccine,” Mr. Bartlett explained.

“As Minister, I am going to be relentless in ensuring that the workers get vaccinated,” he said.

 

Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says players in the tourism industry are at risk of losing out on potential visitors and foreign earnings if front-line staff fail to support the national COVID-19 vaccination programme.

Mr. Bartlett told journalists at a tablet and laptop handover ceremony at the Holiday Inn Resort and Spa in St. James on October 8 it is imperative that workers in the sector be fully vaccinated, as they are the first line of contact for visitors.

“I want that point to be very clear to everybody. This Minister is not afraid to say that your place of business will not be on the list if your staff is not vaccinated, because I don’t want to expose you to the virus and I don’t want to expose the visitors who come to Jamaica to the virus,” the Minister said.

“So, the best way to make sure that doesn’t happen is for you (tourism workers) to be vaccinated,” he added.

The Minister pointed out that approximately 60 per cent of the country’s tourism workers are currently vaccinated. He, however, indicated that this figure pales in comparison to the industry’s target countries where the majority of the overall population is fully vaccinated.

“We have been going hard in the industry, we are probably at about 60 per cent now. That’s still low because coming out of Canada they are averaging 70 per cent in the country overall and in Ontario, where we have a large pull from, they are now 90 per cent vaccinated,” Mr. Bartlett outlined.

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“These destinations are not going to be comfortable coming to us with low vaccination [numbers], especially among workers. So, it is not a matter of choice, it is a matter of imperative,” he added.

Mr. Bartlett is urging Jamaicans, particularly those working in the tourism sector, to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

The Minister said he will be working alongside tour operators, hoteliers, craft vendors, travel agents, transportation operators and other front-line workers in the industry to increase the overall vaccination numbers.

“We have to take a decision, all of us, as to how we live and how we operate. If the industry is to recover properly, then we all have to be healthy and the sign of healthiness for us is at least that we have the protection against the virus, which is the vaccine,” Mr. Bartlett explained.

“As Minister, I am going to be relentless in ensuring that the workers get vaccinated,” he said.

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