Belize - Belize News - - Great Belize Productions - Belize Breaking News
Home » Health » Minister of Public Service on Vaccine Mandate for December 15
Nov 22, 2021

Minister of Public Service on Vaccine Mandate for December 15

Henry Usher

As the government tries to keep Belize open for business, it continues to push for vaccinations to keep COVID infections and deaths low. But when an announcement was circulated recently requiring all public officers to take the jabs by December fifteenth in order to protect themselves, it was met by a degree of resistance. Today on Open Your Eyes morning show, Minister of the Public Service, Henry Usher, explained how they arrived at that date.


Henry Usher, Minister of Public Service

“Originally it was supposed to be earlier, but I said, you know what – when I spoke to the CEO and he sent out the circular, I said let us give a little more time for persons to go out and get their vaccines. Again it’s free. It’s available at all healthcare systems across the country. We talked and we believe that it was enough time for our public officers to go out and get the vaccines before the fifteenth. From in the summer, we spoke about you have to either be vaccinated or you have to provide a COVID negative test every two weeks. Now, that negative test, I believe, while it’s good – it shows that you don’t have it – that two-week window is still a long time for you not – anything can happen in those two weeks. So, we realized that as a Cabinet, that listen we had to eventually move towards a soft vaccine mandate and eventually towards our public service being vaccinated. It wasn’t a decision that we took very lightly. We understand that there are those that are skeptical to it; those that have beliefs against the vaccine, but you have to make decisions for the collective good. We believe that this was in the best interest of Belize, best interest of our people, to protect them, and it came with the necessary medical advice, so it wasn’t done in a vacuum. We got the recommendation from our medical team; we got the recommendation from doctors saying, “listen” – just this morning I was reading a report from the UK newspaper from an anonymous doctor who was saying that there is so much fatigue in the medical community with unvaccinated people because they are taking up bed spaces. They are putting a strain on the health system. They are putting a strain on the medical officers because they have to be seeing so many unvaccinated people needing additional care, needing intensive care, because of a private decision, a personal decision that they made. And when you have a personal decision affecting a national situation, that’s when we really have to make collective decisions as a government, to say listen yes you have your private, personal choice, but we have to make decisions for the common good.”

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.

Advertise Here

Comments are closed