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A time for resolutions

A time for resolutions

Thursday 31 December 2020

A time for resolutions

Thursday 31 December 2020


The end of the year is a time for reviewing past performance and righting wrongs.

A time to express gratitude too. Thank you to those in our health and care services and everyone who has strived to keep providing services to islanders during a difficult year. Thank you to those who have tried to contain the spread of covid-19 in this island too.

With over 700 active covid-19 cases now detected in Jersey, islanders may question whether Jersey’s government has learnt from its mistakes. From having one of the lowest densities of infection in the world, the island has the highest density, all in the space of three months.

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Pictured: "The lockdown on 30 March succeeded in reducing infection before the summer."

The lockdown on 30 March succeeded in reducing infection before the summer. It was imposed after reported cases more than doubled in a week to exceed 25. Linear business growth was affected but exponential infection growth is a more difficult beast to manage. 

Something inconsistent happened in early October. (Is it a coincidence this was shortly after the government’s former Group Director of Policy left her post?)  

Active covid cases in the island increased to 28. Yet, flights with infected travellers kept coming in. Loopholes in self-isolation requirements were maintained, while islanders were encouraged to spend vouchers in town to support retail and hospitality businesses. Contact tracing leakage was inadequately measured or estimated, or not effectively countered (maybe, all three).  

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Pictured: Jersey’s Government needs resolve to reduce daily covid increases to below the ‘critical’ infection risk level of 25 in 100,000 again. 

New Year also is a time for resolutions. Resolution is a common term in the corporate world: less so, in government. The States Assembly passes propositions, not resolutions. Aspiring to balance competing interests differs from resolve too.  

Resolution involves a firm decision and determination not to deviate off course. To succeed, resolutions need ‘SMART’ (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time Measured) objectives, along with a clear and focused strategy. It helps to follow models of success and possibly asking others to hold you to account.  

Jersey’s Government needs resolve to reduce daily covid increases to below the ‘critical’ infection risk level of 25 in 100,000 again. 

Guernsey and New Zealand have shown resolve. Japan and Taiwan used it to suppress covid-19 differently, supporting their hospitality industries without crippling their economies. 

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Pictured: Will Jersey’s Government, like Taiwan’s, be giving its citizens three masks a day?

So, will Jersey’s Government, like Taiwan’s, be giving its citizens three masks a day, teaching them how to use those masks properly and instructing them to wear their masks outdoors at all times? Not even those on a low income in Jersey appear to have been offered masks, let alone to have been professionally trained in wearing them.   

Officials in Japan warned citizens to avoid closed spaces, crowded spaces and close settings since March. They monitored observance. Here…?  

It’s important for success to acknowledge slip-ups, rather than blame others, and to put yourself back on track constantly and instantly. Will Jersey’s Government be doing this and publishing all relevant supporting data daily?  

Time for a New Year’s resolution.

Let’s hope, in 2021, we can celebrate Jersey’s government turning over a new leaf, on a clear path to self-improvement.   

The views expressed in this article are those of the author, and and do not represent those of any committee, board or organisation which she happens to be a member of.

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