TCI Delegation attends COP26

Friday, 05 November - The Ministry of Tourism, Environment, Fisheries, Maritime Affairs, Culture & Heritage, Agriculture, Religious Affairs and Gaming, represented by the Hon. Minister Josephine Connolly and Director Lormeka Williams, from the Department of Environment & Coastal Resources (DECR), are currently attending the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (also known as COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland, UK. 

 

The summit has brought parties together, including the UK Overseas Territories (UKOTs) Association Delegation, to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. While in Glasgow, the Hon. Minister has had access to the 'Blue Zone', the UN-managed space that hosts the negotiations and brings together delegations from 197 countries. The Zone was the venue for the World Leaders' Summit on November 1st & 2nd. On November 6th the Overseas Territory delegation (which includes the Turks & Caicos Islands) will host an event for Nature and Land Use Day. The event will explore how the UKOTs are taking action to counter and mitigate the effects of global warming and how they are safeguarding precious marine environments. 

 

Honourable Minister Connolly engaged at the highest level, with her Caribbean counterparts, on topics which include reopening strategies and tourism-related impacts and the way forward as it pertains to COVID-19, as well as issues of sustainable financing for climate change resilience for island-states. 

 

"For the future, we must shift to sustainable development and mainstreamed resilience practices, and arm ourselves with the data, expertise, and modelling required to understand how Climate Change will impact our society and environment. We need improved comprehension of increased impacts of flooding, intense heat, drought, and storms, and regional realities like Climate Change-induced migration. To mainstream Climate Change resilience, we need expertise, and capital and recurrent funding, while at the same time not sacrificing other vital conservation projects and programmes. ", said Hon. Minister Connolly. 

 

At COP26 countries are being asked to come forward with ambitious 2030 emissions reductions targets (NDCs) that align with reaching net zero by the middle of the century. This is particularly pertinent to the Caribbean region as island-states, including the Turks & Caicos Islands, find themselves on the frontline of the impacts of climate change. Coral reefs, vital to our economy, are less resilient to disease and our reefs are more susceptible to bleaching impacting the overall biodiversity of our marine ecosystems. We are most vulnerable to the increase in sea levels and are starting to see the impacts on our communities as land stability is threatened on a daily basis. Each year we face more intense storms, with hurricane season arriving earlier and ending much later. 

 

The conference is the 26th Conference of the Parties  (COP) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the third meeting of the parties to the Paris Agreement. It is being held in Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom, between 31 October and 12 November 2021, under the presidency of Rt. Hon. Alok Sharma.

New Limitation of Actions Ordinance for the Turks and Caicos Islands

The Hon. Attorney General, Rhondalee Braithwaite Knowles OBE QC is pleased to announce that the Limitations of Actions Ordinance 2021 was passed and enacted into law by the House of Assembly on 30 September 2021 and will come into force on Tuesday, 14th October 2021.

The research on the Limitation of Actions Bill commenced in 2014. The Ordinance is based on the UK Limitation Act 1980, with consideration given to other statutes of limitation in jurisdictions such as Anguilla, Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada and the Cayman Islands. The Bill was completed in 2016 and has benefitted from consultation with the Judiciary and members of the Bar Association. The Bill was originally introduced into the House of Assembly in 2016, but the House was dissolved leading to General Elections before the Bill was completed and as such it fell away. Following feedback from members of the House of Assembly and the Hon. Chief Justice, the Bill was reviewed and updated, and sent again for consultation with the Judiciary and the Bar Association in 2020 and 2021. Following a lively and informative debate, the bill went through the House of Assembly with unanimous support from all of the Hon. Members.

The Ordinance bars the bringing of several civil actions to the court by persons after the expiration of the limitation period. In consideration of the fact that persons’ right of action would be barred after certain periods, the limitation periods in the Ordinance were given much consideration, and are comparable to other jurisdictions. The Ordinance provides for safeguards to ensure that it would not affect ongoing actions. Furthermore, the Ordinance gives a grace period of actions which would expire on the date of commencement of the Ordinance or within one year of commencement to be extended without being barred for a period of 12 months from that date.

In announcing the commencement of the Ordinance, the Hon. Attorney General remarked that “I want to especially thank the Hon. Chief Justice Mrs. Mabel Agyemang and the members of the senior bar who commented on the drafts as well as to recognise the sterling work of Senior Legislative Drafter Ms. Gogontle Gatang. The introduction of statutes of limitation in the Turks and Caicos Islands is a welcome development as it places the Turks and Caicos Islands on par with mature jurisdictions and is a positive and progressive benefit to the people of the Islands. The Limitation of Actions Ordinance provides certainty to the end of litigation. Prior to the enactment of the Ordinance, whilst there are some particular provisions, there was no legislation in the Islands dealing with limitation periods in general for various civil actions. As such, a majority of civil actions were open for litigation indefinitely, irrespective of when the right of action accrued or a person became aware of his or her right to an action.

It is recognized that having litigation open for long periods of time is not favourable for any society as it denotes no end to litigation. The problem is that with the passage of time, recollections fade, witnesses pass away, records are lost and people move on with their lives (Canny M. Limitation of Actions in England and Wales), making it difficult to be successful in litigation. In line with the notion and expectation that litigation or the right to bring certain actions should at some point come to an end, the Ordinance seeks to introduce general limitations consistent with the law in other commonwealth jurisdictions and having taken into consideration the issues at play in the Islands.”

The Ordinance comes into force on Tuesday, 12 October 2021, and as such, those actions which will be barred on 12 October or within twelve months from commencement, can be brought before the Court up to 11 October 2022.

Public Consultation – Private Security Code of Conduct – Extension of Time

Due to request by several stakeholders and to allow adequate time for all interested parties to review and provide feedback, the closing date for the Public Consultation on the Draft Private Security Code of Conduct has been extended for an additional two (2) weeks, and now closes on Thursday 21st October 2021.

 

The National Security Secretariat (NSS) would like to invite the public, relevant stakeholders and interested persons to provide comments, feedback and queries on the proposed Turks and Caicos Islands Private Security Code of Conduct (Voluntary).

 

See attached the proposed documents for review and consideration:

 

  1. Private Security Code of Conduct
  2. Annexes: Employment Screening Criteria and Training Criteria 

 

The documents can be found on the Turks and Caicos Islands Government webpage at www.gov.tc.

 

All interested stakeholders and the general public alike, are invited to review these documents and submit any comments/queries in writing to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Please ensure that Code of Conduct is clearly marked in the subject line when submitting.

Oral Health Month 2021

‘HEALTHY MOUTH HEALTHY BODY’

Our fellow residents of the Turks and Caicos Islands. The Government Dental Department under the Ministry of Health and Human Services are very delighted that you can join us in the month of October in celebrating Oral Health Month. The month is being celebrated under the theme ‘HEALTHY MOUTH, HEALTHY BODY’; from October 1st to October 30th, 2021.

During this month we will be highlighting various activities, geared at sensitizing the general public on the relevance of having a healthy mouth that contributes to a healthy body.

As rightly emphasized by the former US Surgeon General Everett C. Koop M.D (1916-2013) “You are not healthy without good oral health”.

Oral health begins with a healthy mouth and in having a healthy mouth; your overall health will be improved. Everyone wants to be healthy. Health is wealth. A healthy nation is a wealthy nation. Therefore, we are encouraging everyone to prioritize your oral health especially this month of October.

A healthy mouth is a mouth that is clean, and free from oral diseases, and that is what we are advocating.

An unhealthy mouth that presents with dental caries, gum diseases, periodontal diseases, receding gums, mouth lesion, tongue lesions, halitosis; among other oral conditions, will result in an unhealthy body.

Studies have shown links between poor oral health and other health conditions, as a result of bacteria and inflammation that occur in the mouth.

Bacteria from unhealthy structures within the mouth, can be transferred through the bloodstream and compromise the overall health of an individual. Such can have an effect on the heart, kidneys, lungs, brain, and reproductive system.

Scientific Evidence-Based research, support findings linking an unhealthy mouth with causative link to high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, head and neck cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, pre-mature death, and low birth rate.

As of recent, researchers have indicated also that COVID-19 virus has been detected for some individuals as an oral ulcer within the mouth.

There is numerous evidence showing correlations between diseases that affect the body such as HIV, Herpetic diseases, Vitamin deficiencies, among others , will first manifest within the mouth.

Taking good care of your teeth and gums can help you live longer. There are a few tips that you can follow to help you achieve this, such as, maintaining a balance diet, eating foods low in sugar, exercising, and brushing and flossing at least three times a day. Visiting your Dental professionals regularly at least every six months can be helpful in maintaining good Oral health and early detection of oral disease.

The dental department is here to assist you in maintaining a healthy mouth and healthy body.

Having great health is all about prevention. The old adage is still of relevance ‘Prevention is better than Cure’.

As we conclude this brief message. We are inviting you to visit our clinics during this month of October. Tune into the health matters radio program and encourage others to get involve in having healthy mouth-healthy body.

 

IT’S ALL ABOUT HEALTH!!!!

The Turks and Caicos Islands Launches COVID-19 Booster Vaccine Programme

The Turks and Caicos Islands launches its COVID-19 vaccine booster programme commencing on Monday 4th October 2021.

This comes following the approval by Cabinet, of the COVID-19 Booster Vaccine Strategy which was submitted by the Ministry of Health for consideration.

Members of Cabinet including the Governor, Deputy Governor, Honorable Premier, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health were in strong support of the vaccine booster strategy which will provide greater protection to those vulnerable individuals within the country who had previously been fully vaccinated more than six months ago and who are most at risk of severe effects of the disease.

The strategy is based upon the UK guidelines and focuses on priority groups who would benefit from a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. These groups are as follows;

1) Chronic non-communicable diseases clients

2) Elderly - Adults 50 years and over

3) Health care and frontline workers

4) Caregivers of the vulnerable

All persons in the groups listed above would have to have completed the two-dose series more than 6 months ago to be eligible for the booster dose of the vaccine. Eligible persons should reach out to their health care providers to schedule their booster dose.

The booster vaccine programme rolled out in the UK on 20.9.2021 and in the USA on 24.9.2021. On 9th September, Dr June Raine, Chief Executive of the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency), which regulates medicines, medical devices and blood components for transfusion in the UK, issued the following statement; “We know that a person’s immunity may decline over time after their first vaccine course. I am pleased to confirm that the COVID-19 vaccines made by Pfizer and AstraZeneca can be used as safe and effective booster doses. This is an important regulatory change as it gives further options for the vaccination programme, which has saved thousands of lives so far. The regulatory decision followed a careful review of available data on safety and effectiveness of booster or supplementary vaccine doses by the MHRA and the independent Commission on Human Medicines (CHM), which advises the government.”

The TCI is currently progressing on its fifth tranche of the vaccine which was received from the UK and anticipates the receipt of additional doses of the vaccine to support the ongoing roll out of the vaccine to all eligible residents as well as the booster programme.

The vaccine is critical to the ongoing national response to the COVID19 pandemic. The vaccines are safe and can prevent severe illness requiring hospitalization. All eligible persons are encouraged to get vaccinated to continue protecting themselves, their loved ones and the wider community. All eligible persons who are unvaccinated are encouraged to take the vaccine. 

Turks & Caicos Government

Office of the Governor

Office of the Deputy Governor

Contact

COVID-19 UPDATE