Government Unreservedly apologised to the church community over its latest Covid-19 rules. The following is a news release issued by the government to that effect:
The Turks and Caicos Islands Cabinet sincerely apologizes to the Church Community for unintentionally including Churches and religious events alongside bars and discotheques in a press release on the new COVID-19 regulations.
In our haste to announce, via the press, the updated regulations ahead of the implementation date, the egregious error was made. We wish to make it clear that in the actual regulations, the Church is properly separated from other groups.
We will invite the Religious Leaders in the days ahead to discuss how best to grant our people their right to worship and conduct their religious affairs while protecting them from COVID-19 when we have major spikes.
The decision to impose these stricter restrictions was not arbitrary but with Public Health guidance to reduce the spread of the virus. The new restrictions are temporary and will be reviewed within the next two weeks.
We thank the church for the work they have done to help with our public education on COVID-19 and vaccination. We could not have achieved success without your valuable support. We ask the Church to work with us, over what will be a very short period, to get us through what we expect to be a temporary spike.
The Turks and Caicos Islands Government continues to value the role of the Church and its importance to the religious and social development of our communities. The government’s commitment to supporting faith-based initiatives, as set out in its manifesto, will ensure the views of the church are considered in critical decision-making initiatives.