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Ralph Gonsalves 3

Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves. (File photo by Lance Neverson/Facebook)

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When students and teachers return to school on Monday, for the first time this year, teachers who have not taken a government-approved COVID-19 vaccine or who have not been tested for the virus would be asked to leave the compound.

Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves made the announcement on VC3, on Wednesday, as he continued to defend his government’s vaccination or test policy for public sector workers.

Under the policy, all employees of the central government or statutory entities are required to submit their COVID-19 vaccination report or be tested up to once every two weeks for the virus.

“Tomorrow, the 8th and Friday the 9th, we are asking the teachers across the whole of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, the areas where you are from, go to your clinic, take the test.

“If everybody could take it, fine. You take the test or you take the vaccine. Preferably, you take the vaccine. If all of you go and you take the vaccine, that is fine,” Gonsalves said, adding that 331 teachers or 17% of the nation’s educators have taken the vaccine.

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“… when you go in to the principal on the 12th [of April] you say, ‘Well, listen, I am vaccinated or I am tested.’ No big thing. If you are not, you will be asked, ‘Listen, you can’t stay on the compound until you go and get vaccinated or tested.’

“On the 12th, I am informed that the Ministry of Health would have health personnel available to go also to test,” Gonsalves said.

He said that getting vaccinated or testing is “a matter of solidarity.

On Saturday, president of the Public Service Union, Elroy Boucher said that public sector workers have adhered to the COVID-19 protocols so well that there have not been any outbreaks at any government department or agency since the shift system ended on March 17.

Gonsalves, however, said that there are a number of government offices where COVID-19 has resulted in days-long closures.

He did not indicate when these closures occurred, but listed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Registry, the Attorney General’s Chambers, Director of Public Prosecution’s Chambers, the Accountant General’s Office, and the Ministry of Social Development.

“There are several places… So we have the history and what is prospective about all the variants and so on and forth and we have the vaccine and we have to return to normalcy and we have Soufriere,” Gonsalves said, referring to the nation’s volcano, which has been erupting effusively since late December.  

Meanwhile, in a memo to principals of educational institutions, on Wednesday, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Myccle Burke, noted that the government, through a March 31, 2021 memorandum has communicated “a policy on vaccination and testing of the public sector workers”.

He said that consistent with the policy position of the government, all teachers and ancillary staff are required to submit to the Ministry of Education through their respective principal, a copy of their vaccination card or recent COVID-19 rapid antigen test results, no later than 1:30 p.m. on April 9, 2021.

“The Ministry of Health and the Environment has committed to providing the resources to execute this critical activity in preparation for the scheduled reopening of school on April 12, 2021,” Burke said.

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  1. Avatar Of Columbus LieColumbus lie says:

    Let us all pray for the PM his behavior has been very erotic since taking that jab. You so concern about the Big C when the BIG A running loose. The things these leaders will do for money. If your education revolution worked the people should be smart enough to think on there own about what’s best for them.


  2. Avatar Of Teacher Of 32 YearsTeacher of 32 years says:

    This feels like being bullied, no less. Teachers should take the vaccine or test under guarantee that the students they have to interact closely with will have been vaccinated too, or be tested twice monthly as well, and their parents too by extension. After all, infection is a “2 way street” in this context, especially as being vaccinated gives one NO advantage over not being vaccinated! Still can infect others, still can get infected, no leeway for recompense if this vaccines “injures me” or “God forbids, takes me out!”


  3. The love of money is the root to all evil. No one should be forced to do what they don’t want to do. The PM is not God. It’s so ironic how all of them is singing the same song. Stop killing out the people.


  4. Avatar Of Brooklyn Star ⭐Brooklyn Star ⭐ says:

    Total madness. Lord have mercy on these Caribbean Islands where leaders feel they own you and treat you like puppets on a string.


  5. Avatar Of Neville J GarrawayNeville J Garraway says:

    And dont tell me nothing about his black wife.Thomas Jefferson had a whole bunch of kids a slave woman doesn’t mean he cared about her .She died still being a slave.


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