Thu | Aug 6, 2020

Opening cinemas not a wise move

Published:Monday | July 6, 2020 | 12:27 AM


It is said that when one tries to please everyone, they end up pleasing no one. I fear that will be the case with the Government, which seems to be confused about how to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic by flip-flopping on its decisions.

The prime minister’s announcement that cinemas will reopen reeks of miscalculation and may be one more gamble with the lives of the Jamaican people.

While this is welcome news for the cinema owners, how can hosting persons in closed, air-conditioned rooms for more than two hours be safe? If these patrons are buying food and drinks, will they be expected to keep masks on while eating and drinking and frolicking in the dark? Who will be tasked to police them?

Doesn’t this go against all advice we were given by the health ministry, to include, but not limited to, opening windows and avoiding air-conditioned, cold, dark, confined spaces where crowds tend to gather? At a time when social gatherings are at a maximum of 20, how can the opening of cinemas be justified – even at 50/60 per cent occupancy – when the number of occupants will far exceed the 20-person maximum?

The Government needs to seriously rethink its decision to reopen the cinemas for the time being.