Welcome to the crisis website of the Public Entity Bonaire. This website is online when there is a crisis. That is why you can now find all information about COVID-19 on this website.

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Q&A residents

Last update: May 13th 2021

This information has been compiled by the Public Entity of Bonaire (OLB) in collaboration with the Public Health Department Bonaire and other organizations.

The list is continually updated. The developments surrounding COVID-19 are unpredictable; situations, rules and circumstances may change at any moment.

For the latest news please see the OLB press releases on its Facebook page.

If you have a question that is not yet included in the list, please e-mail it to info@bonairegov.com

No rights can be derived from the information on the Q&A list. 

Households

IIs there an overview where I may find the measures applicable from 13 May onwards now that Bonaire has been designated risk level 3?

From March 18th onwards, Bonaire has been designated risk level 6. For an overview of the measures applicable to each level, please refer to the diagram at:
https://www.bonairecrisis.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Maatregelenschema-EN-DEF-1.pdf
and
https://www.bonairecrisis.com/en/measures/

The measures for COVID-19 are related to the risks involved for a variety of different circumstances. This diagram distinguishes six different levels for the developments relating to COVID-19. The diagram shows the measures applicable to each level.

Are people allowed to come together and may events be organized?

A distinction is made between privately organized gatherings and professionally organized events.

For privately organized events such as private parties at home, the rules are as follows:
* A maximum of 10 people may be present (excluding children up to 13 years);
* Attendees must keep at least 1.5 meters distance from the person closest to them at all times.

* A maximum of 100 people may be present at wedding ceremonies and at funerals. However, the space must be large enough to enable all 100 people present to keep a distance of 1.5 meters from each other. This measure does not apply to wedding parties. For a wedding party a maximum of 50% of the capacity may be used with a maximum of 50 people. All guests must be registered.

For professionally organized events such as markets, road parades and parties that are held outside of the home, the rules are as follows:
* A maximum of 50 people may be present (this also includes staff);
* A maximum of only 50% of the available space may be used;
* Attendees must keep at least 1.5 meters distance from the person standing nearest to them;
* All guests must be registered;
* Anyone professionally organizing an event must also comply with the relevant laws and regulations.
* If the event in question requires an official permit, the normal / applicable procedures must be followed to obtain that permit.

In both cases (privately and professionally organized events) singing and dancing is prohibited and strict hygiene requirements must be observed in accordance with the Public Health Department’s guidelines.
The elderly and people with chronic illnesses are advised to stay at home.

May I call the police department (KPCN) or the Enforcement Directorate if people or companies do not comply with the measures?

Yes. The police and the Supervision and Enforcement Directorate cannot simultaneously check all places at once. Reports, therefore, are welcomed. You may get in touch:
* Via email: bisami_TH@bonairegov.com
* Via the tip line Caribbean Netherlands Police Force on 7158000 or anonymously on 7177251.
* With the Supervision and Enforcement Directorate on 7155300, or for urgent matters and outside of office hours on 7964850.

Why has it been advised that people should work from home as much as possible?

Infections have often occurred at the work place. Working from home prevents this. It’s actually very simple; the virus itself does not move people carry it with them. The less people move around, the less risk there is of spreading the virus. That is why it has been advised to work from home as much as possible.

Companies

What are the rules for the hospitality sector from 13 May onwards?

The requirements for the hospitality sector are:
• hospitality establishments must close no later than 00:00 p.m.;
• there have to be predetermined seats;
* only half of the number of seats on the premises may be used;
• while on the premises everyone must keep a distance of at least 1.5 meters from the person closest to them at all times;
• everyone must adhere to strict hygiene rules as determined by the Bonaire Public Health Department;
• a record must be kept of the guests and guests must answer a few questions about their health. Guest names and contact details (phone number or e-mail address) must be noted. This is necessary in order to facilitate contact or source tracing should it be required at a later date. These records must be kept for a minimum of 14 and a maximum of 21 days. Guest privacy must be respected so these records must be stored in such a way that guest privacy is protected at all times;
• there may be no singing or dancing.

 

Where can I find whether I may open my store or not?

We differentiate between essential stores such as supermarkets, bakeries, pharmacies, stores with building materials and nonessential stores such as clothing stores and car washes.
Currently, for both types of store the following rules apply:
The basic rules such as keeping 1.5 meters distance from each other, avoiding crowded spaces and regularly washing hands. You may find details of the basic rules at: https://www.bonairecrisis.com/requirements/

In addition, at both types of store a maximum of two people per household may enter at the same time, children under 13 years old are not included in the count.
The use of a cart/basket is mandatory in essential stores.

Since circumstances are different for different stores, store keepers are expected to establish their own door policy. Stores may also require customers to wear face masks and use hand sanitizer. This is not imposed by the government; store keepers may determine this for themselves.

For a list of essential services and processes (companies) please refer to:
https://www.bonairecrisis.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/20210305-List-Essential-stores.pdf

What are the rules that businesses and offices have to adhere to?

The requirements for businesses are as follows:
*It is recommended to work from home as much as possible;
* the workspace is arranged in such a way that it complies with the rules of the Public Health Department. This means that employees must be able to keep a distance of 1.5 meters from each other;
* If it is not possible to keep a distance of 1.5 meters from each other, face masks must be worn;
* In addition, businesses must adhere to the rules concerning hygiene. Supplementary rules may apply to specific lines of business. For more information see the site: https://www.bonairecrisis.com/en/measures

May employers and companies refuse to employ staff or serve customers who have not been vaccinated?

No. Employers may not refuse to employ staff if they have not been vaccinated. Similarly companies are not allowed to refuse to serve unvaccinated customers. Vaccination is not mandatory. Employers are not allowed to ask their employees if they have been vaccinated as employees have the right to their privacy.

Are hairdressers and people in contact professions allowed to work, now that Bonaire has been designated to be at risk level 3?

Yes, it is allowed for hairdressers and people in contact professions such as physiotherapists, nail salon employees, masseurs and dental hygienists to work.
* Contact professions involve close physical contact with customers. Therefore, hairdressers and others in contact professions must wear a face mask while working.
* They must also ensure that customers and employees in waiting rooms and treatment rooms are able to keep a sufficient distance from each other. It is recommended to schedule appointments well apart in order to have as few people as possible in a room at the same time. If there are several rooms on the premises it is preferable to spread the customers /people out.

What are the rules casinos, gambling halls and movie theatres need to comply with in order to be open?

These are the requirements:
*movie theaters must close no later than 00:00 and casinos and gamblings halls must close no later than 02.00 a.m.;
* there must be predetermined seats;
* only a maximum of 50% of these seats may be occupied;
* guests must keep a distance of at least 1.5 meters from each other at all times;
*casinos and cinemas must adhere to hygiene rules as determined by the Bonaire Public Health Department;
* casinos, gambling halls and movie theatre must keep a record of their guests, and guests are required to answer a few questions about their health before entering;
* from midnight till 02:00 a.m. casinos and gamblings halls may not serve any food or beverages.

How do I calculate how many customers may enter my business premises?

Work on the assumption that every customer takes up approximately 10 m2 floor space in your store. For example, your store is 10 meters by 15 meters so the floor surface is 150 m2. In this case a maximum of 15 customers are allowed in your store at the same time. The business owners themselves are responsible for ensuring that they have the right number of customers on their premises.
Not all stores are set up or used in the same way. The Supervision and Enforcement Directorate can provide advice in this matter. For more information call 0800-0800 or 717-4800.

Am I responsible for my customer’s behavior when they are in my store?

You should operate on the principle that the measures you put in place should make it so that your customers have to behave in a Covid-proof way. More information: https://www.bonairecrisis.com/en/measures/

May businesses require visitors to wear face masks?

Yes, business owners may decide for themselves which EXTRA rules they want to implement. It is, however, important to ensure face masks are used properly. Instructions on how to use a face mask correctly you will find on: https://www.bonairecrisis.com/en/communication/ in the document: Advice on face masks.

How are stores and the hospitality sector monitored?

Inspectors from the Supervision and Enforcement Directorate and police officers from KPCN carry out inspections. Anyone who does not follow the rules can be fined.

What is a door policy?

This is a policy in which a business determines for example: how many people are allowed to be on the premises at the same time; how people should enter and leave the premises; what the hygiene rules are; how people are expected to pay; and -if necessary- how customers are registered. This may be different for different places of business. You may find more about this at: https://www.bonairecrisis.com/en/measures/ in the document: Health check for catering and contact professions.

How is it checked that the corona rules are being followed at places of business?

The staff, supervisors and owners of the buildings are responsible to ensure the rules are adhered to. It is not possible to monitor every single place on a daily basis. The Supervision and Enforcement Directorate may take action if the rules in public spaces are not complied with. Where offices are concerned the Labor Inspectorate may take action.

What does the hospitality-sector health check entail?

A health check in the hospitality sector requires people to first answer questions before they are allowed in. This is done to ascertain whether any customer has coronavirus-related symptoms: to ascertain whether a person has been tested and is still waiting for the result; or to determine whether someone should actually be in isolation because they are infected. It may even be possible that a person who wants to enter should -in fact- be quarantined. If someone answers one of the questions with a “Yes”, that person will not be allowed in and will be urged to go home. See also: https://www.bonairecrisis.com/measures/

For how long could establishments in the hospitality sector and businesses be closed down, if they do not comply with the rules?

The inspectors of the Supervision and Enforcement Directorate and the Dutch Caribbean Police Force (KPCN) may decide to temporarily close a business in the hospitality sector if it does not comply with the rules. In such cases the business may reopen when it is ready to comply with the rules again. The duration of closure depends on which rules were violated. If a business repeatedly breaks the rules its license may be revoked.

What are the requirements the sauna's needs to comply with in order to open?

The requirements for sauna’s are as follows:
* A maximum of only 50% of the available space may be used;
* Guests must keep a distance of at least 1.5 meters from each other at all times;
* Sauna’s must adhere to hygiene rules as determined by the Bonaire Public Health Department;
* Sauna’s must keep a record of their guests, and guests are required to answer a few questions about their health before entering.

Is Pachi's open?

No, all sex establishments are closed from 3 January onwards.

Do the companies producing and supplying electricity and water have an emergency plan in place in case they have to operate with less people, due to the corona situation?

Yes, contingency plans have been made to ensure that the production and supply of electricity and water remains uninterrupted, even if the situation should occur that essential posts cannot be filled at all, or just partly, due to infections. We are mainly focusing on preventing these types of situations, not just alleviating the consequences of them.

Schools and organizations

The schools are open again. How will the schools organize teaching?

The schools opened again from 12 April onwards.
In secondary education, the lessons will be organized in such a way that all children are able to keep a distance of 1.5 meters from each other. This is not necessary in primary schools.

It is imperative that everyone at school adheres to the coronavirus rules. Adults and pupils, 12 years and older, must keep a distance of 1.5 meters from each other where possible; they must wash their hands regularly; they should not touch their eyes or nose, and should sneeze or cough into their elbows.
Parents may not be at school for any longer than is strictly necessary.

Are daycare and after-school care facilities open?

* Yes. Daycare and after-school care are open from 12 April onwards.
* Adults must keep 1.5 meters distance from each other.

I hear from some parents that they are not sending their children to school because they are afraid of infection. What is the best course of action for me and my child?

The schools are open, when possible. Your child should attend school. Research has shown that it is rare for children to infect each other at school. Teachers adhere to specific rules in order to prevent infection. Teachers keep a 1.5 meter distance from each other. In secondary education they also keep their distance from the students. Teaching staff has been vaccinated in the recent weeks.

What are the rules for people attending church services, masses and Friday prayers?

* During masses, services and Friday evening prayers it is mandatory that all guests must register and submit to a health check questionnaire.
* Only a maximum of 50% of the seats may be occupied.
* Those present must sit in predetermined seats and be able to keep a distance of 1.5 meters from the person nearest to them.
* Everyone must adhere to strict hygiene rules as determined by the Bonaire Public Health Department.
* In addition, it is advised to sing quietly during services, and it is required to keep all windows open.
* It is recommended that everyone should go home immediately after the event.

What are the rules for gyms / fitness clubs and sports (matches)?

Gyms and fitness clubs may be open if they adhere to the following requirements:
* The gym/ fitness club must not exceed a maximum occupancy of 50% of its usual capacity. Staff is included in this calculation;
* People in the gym/ fitness club keep at least 1.5 meters distance from each other at all times;
* The gym/ fitness club adheres to the rules of hygiene as determined by the Public Health Department;
* The gym/ fitness club registers all visitors and they undergo a health check at the entrance;
*It is recommended to go home immediately after taking part in sports.

* At this risk level, sports events with spectators are permitted. However, the events must take place outdoors and there must be registration and a health check. Only 50% of the capacity may be used and a maximum of 50 spectators is permitted. It is not allowed to sell alcoholic drinks. Organizers are advised to be cautious about admitting spectators at this risk level.
* Practicing sports outside is permitted and 100% of the space available may be used. However, adults must be able to keep 1.5 meters distance from each other.

There is an overview of what is possible per risk level:

* A list for sports events; competitions, matches and tournaments.
* A separate list for all the various types of sports activities.

You may find these lists at:

https://www.bonairecrisis.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Poster-A3-Risiconiveaus_ToelichtingSport-_1803-1.pdf

General

What is the point of the temporary law COVID-19 measures for the residents of Bonaire? And is there a an emergency orginance currently in place?

Not much changed for the residents themselves. The COVID-19 Temporary Measures Act details the various measures and risks pertaining to COVID-19. In addition to this there is a Bonaire Ministerial Regulation, which outlines Bonaire’s options for determining various measures to be taken. In accordance with this Act and the Bonaire Ministerial Regulation, the Island Governor will decide which measures are applicable to Bonaire at any certain moment in time. The current measures may be found in the Governor’s decree on Covid-19 measures. Only the rules for travel to Bonaire are still determined by the Emergency Ordinance.
If you would you like to know more about the Act, the Ministerial Regulation and the Lieutenant Governor’s Decree, please refer to the section: Law, Regulation and Emergency Ordinance, which may be found on this website: https://www.bonairecrisis.com/temporary-act-measures-covid-19/