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Jun 3, 2020

CARICOM IMPACS Come Bearing Sanitary Supplies for Belize Central Prison

At the Philip Goldson International Airport this morning, a French aircraft touched down, bringing supplies that will be used by inmates at the Belize Central Prison. Everywhere, including the prisons, are ideal places for the coronavirus to thrive because of congestion and overcrowding.  But fortunately so far, local prisons have not logged any case of the virus and the Kolbe Foundation wants to keep it that way. The supplies delivered today will give the inmates the precautions to keep the virus away. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.


Isani Cayetano, Reporting

The Belize Central Prison is, by and large, considered to be an environment where the spread of infectious diseases poses great challenge for agencies working to prevent and control the novel coronavirus.  Inmates, according to the World Health Organization, are more susceptible to COVID-19 than the general population because of the cramped conditions in which they live.  A sudden outbreak of the pandemic in prison would place immense pressure on Belize’s public health system.  With that in mind, the CARICOM Implementation Agency for Crime and Security (CARICOM IMPACS), along with the British High Commission, donated basic sanitation supplies and other related items to the Kolbe Foundation.


Virgilio Murillo

Virgilio Murillo, C.E.O., Belize Central Prison

“The aircraft we have in front of us is a French military aircraft and they were very kind in contributing the freight towards delivering the COVID-19 supplies.  The supplies that we received today are things such as the N95 masks, disposable masks, hand washing liquids, disinfectants, hand sanitizers.  We also got two infrared thermometers to beef up our operations as it relates to screening for COVID-19 disease.”


Over the past two weeks, CARICOM IMPACS and the British High Commission in Port of Spain, Trinidad have successfully donated supplies to prisons across the Caribbean, including Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados and Dominica.


Virgilio Murillo

“These supplies are definitely going to boost up our operations that we already have in place going on at the prison to mitigate and to prevent COVID from entering the prison.”


The Regional Security System is a key partner in this partnership by providing airlift and logistical support for the distribution of supplies to CARICOM member states.  The French forces in the Caribbean provided airlift of supplies to Belize, the Bahamas and Haiti.


Virgilio Murillo

“CARICOM IMPACS is the one that coordinated these supplies and that was with the help of the British High Commission in Port of Spain through a fund called the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund.  So they collaborated and they came through with this very handsome donation of over seven thousand U.S. dollars in terms of COVID-19 supplies for the prison.  So big thanks to CARICOM, big thanks to the British government for having the Belize Central Prison in mind.”


The donation of these supplies will encourage and assist with the accelerated adoption of WHO guidelines for prisons and other places of detention, as well as help mitigate the spread of the pandemic and reinforce security within CARICOM. Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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