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£350k hotel bill for virus isolating key workers

£350k hotel bill for virus isolating key workers

Tuesday 14 July 2020

£350k hotel bill for virus isolating key workers


Jersey's government has so far spent more than £350,000 on accommodation for key workers so that they can isolate and avoid passing on covid-19.

The figures were revealed in the States Assembly this week by Treasury Minister, Deputy Susie Pinel.

Responding to a question from Deputy Rob Ward, Deputy Pinel said that £358,000 had been spent so far by Health on accommodation for key workers who needed to isolate from other people in their household, had recently returned from the UK, or had a confirmed - or suspected case - of covid-19.

"Further costs are anticipated as part of the Island's test and trace programs, and detailed forecasts are in the process of being developed. The Government will publish a list of the suppliers who received funding, which will be circulated to members."

The latest figures are a rise of more than £100,000 from mid-June, when Express revealed that the amount spent on hotels for isolating key workers stood at £250,000.

They confirmed that a procurement process took place in advance, resulting in the selection of six sites – four hotels and two self-catering apartment facilities:

  • SACO apartments
  • Liberty Wharf apartments
  • Pomme d’Or Hotel
  • Grand Hotel
  • Radisson Hotel
  • The Royal Yacht Hotel

Elsewhere in the same meeting the Health Minister, Deputy Richard Renouf said that he had asked STAC - the government's medical policy advisory group - to look at making face masks compulsory in indoor public places. 

Renouf_corona_virus.jpg

Pictured: Health Minister, Deputy Richard Renouf, said out of 2,887 passengers to arrived in Jersey, four had so far tested positive for covid-19.

"It remains the case that our public health advice is that cloth masks are strongly recommended, particularly in enclosed public spaces such as shops. We know that in some situations cloth masks can add to the protection we gain from good hygiene, and physical distances, so they maximise the benefits that more consistent use could bring.

"I have asked STAC to provide advice on whether the wearing of clothes masks should be compulsory in certain situations or settings, and how that might work in practice, and I await that advice.

"I'm keeping an open mind...the question is whether cloth masks should remain as strong advice, or should be compulsory."

He was responding to a question from Deputy Graham Truscott, who said that people wanted clear advice and instructions.

Deputy Renouf also responded to comments about the government's Safer Travel Policy on the day the number of confirmed cases in the island increased to nine, with two more cases from screening people arriving in the island. 

He said that 2,887 people had arrived in the island since the policy begun, with four testing positive, all of them asymptomatic. 

 

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