Jamaica will begin relaxing its COVID-19 restrictions this week with the reopening of churches for a two-week trial period.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness announced during a press briefing Monday that beginning May 16 services may resume based on an agreement with the religious community that face masks are worn and social distancing is maintained inside the church.
The prime minster also said no more than 10 people can be gathered outside places of worship while each person stays six-feet apart.
The government will also allow community bars to reopen on May 19 while authorities review how the managers are conducting operations.
Under the criteria for bars reopening, social and physical distancing must be maintained and a limit of five people, including the bartender, are to be in the bar at any given time.
Prime Minister Holness said it is crucial that Jamaicans do their best to maintain the integrity of the relaxed restrictions to help move the nation’s economy back to its capacity.
Jamaica has confirmed 502 coronavirus cases and nine deaths.