The month of June has started out on a positive note for Barbados. As of Monday, June 1st, restaurants across the island are now offering dine-in services and churches, parks, retail outlets, as well as several businesses across the services sector have re-opened their doors to the public. On top of this, as of Tuesday, June 2nd, beach lovers can the enjoy the golden sands of Barbados once again as the beaches of island are now open from 5am-6.30pm daily.
This follows the positive announcement of Barbados’ ‘Tourism Recovery Task Force’ which will aid the tourism industry in its recovery post Covid-19. Since the start of the global pandemic, Barbados has been quick in its response and has distributed over 5,000 tests. Speaking about the test numbers this week, Jeffrey Bostic, Minster of Health, Barbados, said that it is “one of the highest numbers in CARICOM [the Caribbean Community]”.
The ‘Tourism Recovery Task Force’ has been established to assist the local tourism industry during the current Covid-19 crises and transform the industry going forward. This news was revealed by Hon. Kerrie D. Symmonds, M.P. Minister of Tourism and International Transport, during an online press conference in recent weeks.
The task force, which has been running since April, has a number of key responsibilities all of which are dedicated to improving tourism in Barbados.
Symmonds said, “One of the things that the Prime Minister felt very strongly about was that we should have a Barbados Tourism Recovery Task Force which would enable us to manage the response to the COVID-19 crisis.”
“The Task Force therefore has two mandates: one – the management of the COVID crisis and the second one – the transformation of the tourism sector and the tourism industry in Barbados; and in that regard, we feel that we have done an adequate amount of service to the opportunity that now presents itself during this downtime”.
The Tourism Task Force comprises four sub-committees:
- Sub-committee 1 is responsible for Operations, Sustainability and Finance. It will put a special focus on financial issues facing the tourism sector.
- Sub-committee 2 is responsible for Human Resource Development. This committee will implement a training programme designed to help those within the sector upgrade their skills.
- Sub-committee 3 is responsible for Health and Safety. It will focus on creating health, hygiene, and safety protocols.
- Sub-committee 4 is responsible for Research and Development. Once the appropriate research has been conducted, strengths and weaknesses will be highlighted, and improvements will be made.
Symmonds the online press conference ended by stating that the aim of the task force was to help Barbados “do tourism in a better, more efficient, and more productive way than we had ever done it before.”
It was also announced this week by Jeffrey Bostic, Minster of Health, Barbados that COVID-19 has now been contained in Barbados. However, he also advised the public to continue to adhere to public health protocols.
Barbados airspace is currently closed to international commercial passenger flights until 30th June 2020.
For more information on Barbados please contact Niamh Waters, firstname.lastname@example.org