“If somebody comes into Bermuda and chooses to not comply with the Quarantine Act they will be detained at the airport in the interest of security, health security to Bermuda,” Police Commissioner Stephen Corbishley said, adding “there are lessons learned from Sunday where that did not happen.”
This follows after Sophia Cannonier and Michael Watson returned home from the UK on Sunday and left the airport. Later that night, a a number of police officers were seen outside of the Cannonier Watson residence, which was followed by the Health Ministry and Police stating that the couple “are in breach of section 27[ab] of the Quarantine [Covid-19] [No. 3] Order 2020 for refusing to comply with a requirement to quarantine” and it “is expected that this matter will go before the courts.
Speaking at this evening’s press conference, Commissioner Corbishley said, “The BPS for 18 months now have worked in support of the Government’s position to protect Bermuda from the coronavirus and we continue to do so, and also to reiterate the point that the Premier has raised, our biggest risk is the border.
“Now on Sunday, what concerned many that a family arrived in Bermuda and did not comply with the quarantine regulations and were allowed to leave the airport. There was a plan in place — jointly between ourselves and health — but quite clearly, the execution of that plan resulted in that family leaving.
“And as already articulated, there is now a process in regards to their accountability in regards to breaching those regulations. And whilst now is not the time to blame, there is a very intense process to look at the lessons learned on the responsibility certainly of the BPS to ensure that it doesn’t take place again.
“And we are aware of other people, quite prominently stating that they also intend to breach the quarantine regulations. Let me be clear that what happened on Sunday will not happen again.
“The lessons learned have been addressed and we will ensure that the government’s quite clear direction and the regulations in place will be adhered to.”
“If somebody does not agree, or fails to comply with the quarantine process, then there is quite clear regulation, which results in detainment, arrest, and prosecution,” the Commissioner added. “We have put additional resources in to make sure that takes place from the BPS perspective.”
The video below contains extracts of the Commissioner speaking this evening, please note he was speaking at three different times during a timespan of over one hour and we have edited them together, and if you would prefer to watch the full unedited video you can see that here, but we added the extracts of the Commissioner together for people who want to see his comments all together.
Premier David Burt also addressed the general topic at the press conference, saying: “Let me be clear: the Government’s policy on the requirement for supervised hotel quarantine of unvaccinated travellers is unchanged, and the expectation is that the law will be enforced.
“The attempts of some in this community to make false comparisons of the selfish and reckless actions we all witnessed with some recognised historical causes for social justice and hard-won freedoms are quite frankly offensive.
“I have made the Government’s position on this matter clear to the Governor, and I wish to leave no doubt in the minds of others who may take it upon themselves to test our resolve. The expectation of the Government is that there will be compliance with the law, and where the law is breached, there will be enforcement.”
According to a flyer circulating someone plans to return home tomorrow afternoon.