AGRICULTURE and Marine Resources Minister Michael Pintard.
By RASHAD ROLLE
Tribune Senior Reporter
AGRICULTURE Minister Michael Pintard said officials will err on the side of caution after a Ministry of Agriculture and Marine Resources employee tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday.
The Tribune understands the employee was sent home last week after developing symptoms and his result came back positive. Many staff members of the ministry and Bahamas Agricultural and Industrial Corporation have since been told to quarantine.
“Every single person related to that has been sent home,” Mr Pintard said yesterday. “Contact tracing will be done. Most staff are already home as a result of a lockdown. We are erring on the side of caution. As many who need that time off, we will support that. Not just (at the Gladstone Road building), but headquarters too. We will make sure to have a deep cleaning of the facilities.”
New COVID-19 lockdown rules took effect Tuesday night. Workers, not including essential workers, are mandated to work remotely from home until August 19.
“All persons employed within the public service, unless specifically designated as essential workers in order 3 or designated by the permanent secretary of any minister as essential workers, shall work remotely from home,” the order says.
Several businesses have also had to close for deep cleaning after COVID-19 exposure. This week, Family Guardian Insurance Company announced their Carmichael Office would be closed to the public until further notice after an employee tested positive for COVID-19.
The employee from the Carmichael District Office is presently on leave and not requiring hospitalization, shared the insurance company on their Facebook page.
The company explained: “We will conduct a full, professional sanitization of our premises.
“All employees who may have been exposed will work remotely while self-quarantining for 14 days. An assessment of each employee will be conducted prior to their return to work.”
Recently three other local businesses have experienced staff members testing positive for the virus, including Dairy Queen, Nassau Tile and Bliss Wax Boutique.