Premier Hon. Wayne Panton and Leader of the Opposition Hon. Roy McTaggart met today to urge all eligible Cayman Islands residents to get vaccinated against COVID-19 ahead of the planned reopening of borders, slated to begin in September.
The pair has issued a joint video message to the country emphasising unity in endorsing the national vaccination drive currently under way and spearheaded by the Public Health Department.
The combined plea comes on the heels of news issued on Thursday, 22 July, that the Delta variant of the COVID-19virus has been detected through genomic sequencing in the samples of two travellers in quarantine in the Cayman Islands.
The Delta variant is known as a “variant of concern” because of its different characteristics, with evidence that it is more contagious than variants previously encountered.
Premier Panton said, “To keep our country and our people safe, we are putting aside any and all political differences and differences in opinion. This effort goes far beyond politics. Our unity on this message should show everyone its importance.”
Mr. McTaggart said, “We are completely united in the goal of reopening our Islands safely. And we are agreed that the only way we can achieve this is by getting our people vaccinated.”
Premier Panton noted that vaccines are readily available. He said, “The vaccines are free and available to all. We are assured of enough supply from the UK to reach our vaccination target and beyond. So please, both of us are imploring you all to do the right thing, to do the safest thing for us all, and get vaccinated.”
Both the Premier and Opposition Leader urged front-line workers in both the public and private sectors to get vaccinated as a matter of urgency due to the high-risk nature of their jobs, and also especially encouraged younger people to come forward as vaccination rates for younger age groups are lower than for the older ones.
The joint video message can be viewed in full on the CIG TV You Tube account at: