PHILIPSBURG:--- Chair of the EOC Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs announced that all schools will be closed as of Wednesday, March 18th, 2020.
As of midnight Tuesday, March 17th only residents of St. Maarten/ St. Martin will be allowed entry to St. Maarten until March 22nd. Jacobs said that on Saturday International flights were banned by Tuesday that has been adjusted whereby Caribbean nationals are also not allowed to enter St. Maarten. However, flights to the BES islands and Curacao will remain open to facilitate medical transfers.
Jacobs said that students residing overseas or residents of St. Maarten/ St. Martin must be able to provide a valid identification card, and or other documents that could prove they live on the island such as driver's license or proof of registration. Jacobs made clear that on Sunday no one including residents of the island will not be allowed entry, she said those persons that returned to the island will be placed on mandatory quarantine as the fight against COVID-19 continues.
All non- essential businesses will also have to shut their doors as of Wednesday, March 18th, bars, stores, casinos, gyms and other sports halls, hair and nail salons, barbershops are among those that must cease operations as of Wednesday, March 17th, 2020. Meanwhile, supermarkets, Pharmacies will remain open so that residents can obtain the necessary food and medical items. Restaurants will be allowed to remain open but it will only be for taking out purposes, restaurants are not allowed to have dining patrons during the two week period.
Jacobs cautioned residents that there is no need to binge shop as trade will continue, she said that the restrictions only apply to people and not for food and other supplies.
The Prime Minister expressed her disappointment against the persons who chose to share certain images as they try to identify the first confirmed case of the COVID-19 virus. Jacobs said the least that can be done is to respect the privacy of everyone as all are susceptible to the COVID-19.
Non-essential services that are to close as of Wednesday: