SINT MAARTEN (POINT BLANCHE) – Two staff members at the Prison have tested positive for COVID-19. The staff members have had no direct contact with inmates, and therefore pose no immediate threat to prisoners. Additionally, management of the prison have launched their contingency plan of acquiring more personnel in order to avoid any disruption of the house of detention operations.
On Saturday, August 15, 2020, a staff member reported having COVID-19 related symptoms to the management of the Prison and House of Detention via telephone. This staff member took precautionary measures, remained at home, and informed the management that they’d visited the doctor, and had tested positive for COVID-19 by Collective Prevention Services (CPS). The staff member has been advised by CPS to remain in quarantine, and per protocol, contact tracing has begun. Inmates of the prison do not have direct contact with this staff member. Per protocol, it is strictly mandatory for all staff members and guards of the prison to sanitize their hands and use a facemask at all times when at work.
Prior to this, on Tuesday, August 11, 2020, a guard who works stationed outside of prison contacted management while at home. The guard informed his superior via telephone, that he felt ill, and experienced COVID-19 related symptoms. Per protocol, the individual was asked to contact CPS and take precautionary measures by remaining at home and later tested positive for COVID-19.
CPS has begun contact tracing to identify persons in close contact with the staff members who have tested positive for COVID-19. Management of the prison and CPS contacted workers who have possibly been in contact with their colleagues. They have been asked to take precautionary measures, including remaining quarantined at home and monitoring their symptoms, while they wait to be tested.