Religious institutions must abide by law, or else

Religious institutions must abide by law, or else

Government has taken the decision to prevent churches and other places of worship from gathering with more than 10 persons.

The Ministry of Health issued a Legal Notice, banning the religious organizations and other social places from allowing more than 10 persons to gather. Failure to do so will result in the organization paying a fine of $50,000 or face six months in jail.

According to Legal Notice No. 57, approved by Health Minister Terrence Deyalsingh on March 22, 2020, religious gatherings of more than 10 people are unlawful.
2. (1) of the regulations, titled “Public Health [2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)] (No. 3) Regulations, 2020, state for the purposes of controlling and preventing the spread of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV), it shall be an offence, during the period specified in regulation 5(b), for any person–
(a) to conduct the business of a bar, whether or not the person is a licensed person under the Liquor Licences Act;
(b) to operate a club as defined in section 2 of the Registration of Clubs Act;
(c) to operate a theatre licensed under the Cinematograph Act;
(d) to operate a common gaming house or betting office licensed under the Gambling and Betting Act;
(e) to conduct religious or ecclesiastical services or any other religious gatherings where the number of persons participating therein exceeds ten; or
(f) to provide the amenity of seated dining at a restaurant to any customer.
(2) A person who contravenes subregulation (1) commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of fifty thousand dollars and to imprisonment for six months.
3. All air and sea ports shall, except in relation to–
(a) air and sea cargo; and
(b) air and sea transport between Trinidad and Tobago,
remain closed to the arrival or departure of aircraft or ships or other vessels carrying passengers unless permitted by the Minister with responsibility for national security.”
The ban on gatherings come into effect from March 22 to April 30, 2020.

The closure of air and sea ports comes into effect from March 23, 2020.

Bars, cinemas, restaurants, clubs and gambling/betting houses are prohibited from operating until April 30, 2020.

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