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Worshipers during Holy Mass at the Our Lady of Perpetual Help RC Church on Harris Promenade in San Fernando yesterday. Churches were able to resume activity under strict COVID-19 regulations following months of closure.

The Honourable Terrence Deyalsingh, Minister of Health has announced the details on the Extension of Operating Hours for Religious or Ecclesiastical Organisations to Conduct Religious Meetings or Services In Person, the Construction Sector, Establishments that support retail, sale and services in the Construction Sector and Laundromats and the Increase in the Gathering of Persons in any Public Place at a time. Details follow in this press release from the minister.

Religious or Ecclesiastical Organisations will be allowed to conduct religious meetings or services that do not exceed ninety minutes, the Construction Sector, Establishments that support retail, sale and services in the Construction Sector (including Hardware Stores and Quarries registered under the Minerals Act, Chapter 61:03) and Laundromats, will be allowed to operate from 5:01 am to 9:59 pm and persons may gather in any public place where the gathering does not exceed ten persons at a time.

Pursuant to Regulation 3(10)(ao) of the Emergency Powers (No. 2) Regulations, 2021, with effect from Monday 18th October, the Minister of Health hereby authorises religious or ecclesiastical organisations, to conduct religious meetings or services in person, where the gathering at any place used for that purpose does not exceed twenty-five percent of the allowed capacity of the place and the religious meetings or services do not exceed ninety minutes, UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE, Monday through Sunday, 5:01 am to 9:59 pm.

Religious or Ecclesiastical Organisations are reminded that, as provided at Regulation 3(5) of the Emergency Powers (No. 2) Regulations, 2021, they may continue to conduct:

1. christenings and baptisms in person, where the gathering at any place used for that purpose does not exceed ten persons and the christenings and baptisms do not exceed one hour; and

2. funeral services and wedding services in person, where the gathering of persons at anyplace used for that purpose does not exceed ten persons.

Pursuant to Regulation 3(10)(ao) of the Emergency Powers (No. 2) Regulations, 2021, with effect from Monday 18th October, the Minister of Health hereby authorises the Construction Sector, Establishments that support retail, sale and services in the Construction Sector (including Hardware Stores and Quarries registered under the Minerals Act, Chapter 61:03) and Laundromats, to operate, UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE, Monday through Sunday, 5:01 am to9:59 pm.

Pursuant to Regulation 3(10)(ao) of the Emergency Powers (No. 2) Regulations, 2021, with effect from Monday 18th October, the Minister of Health hereby authorises the gathering of persons in any public place where the gathering does not exceed ten persons at a time.

All persons are advised to comply strictly with the (other) legal requirements of the Emergency Powers (No. 2) Regulations, 2021, the legal requirements of the Public Health [2019 Novel Corona virus (2019-nCoV)] (No. 20) Regulations, 2021 (or any subsequent respective Regulations) and the public health guidelines.

Authorizations granted by the Minister of Health pursuant to Statements 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 and11 remain valid (unless otherwise varied by this Statement).

The Ministry of Health will continue to monitor this development and take steps to safeguard the health of the population.