Jamaica: Some residents running out of food in quarantined Bull Bay

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Jamaica: Some residents running out of food in quarantined Bull Bay
Security forces monitoring Seven Miles and Eight Miles in Bull Bay, St Andrew, now under quarantine.
Security forces monitoring Seven Miles and Eight Miles in Bull Bay, St Andrew, now under quarantine.

(JAMAICA STAR) — Food and other necessities are reportedly running out in some of the households on Morales Drive in Seven Miles, Bull Bay, which is currently under quarantine.

Mary Black*, a resident of the community, told THE STAR via telephone yesterday that she has ran short of food for her family because she is unable to make it to the ATM to withdraw much needed cash.

The quarantine was announced for Seven Miles and Eight Miles on Friday night by Prime Minister Andrew Holness as a measure to restrain the spread of COVID-19. Movement within the community has been curtailed for 14 days. At the time, Dr. Jacqueline Bisasor-McKenzie, chief medical officer, said 30 persons had been in direct contact with Patient Zero, the first person on the island to test positive for the conoravirus, and eight of them are symptomatic.

Sobbing over the telephone as she related her ordeal, the Bull Bay resident said that while she supports the health measure, some residents are now suffering because they were taken off-guard.

“All the food I had in my house, is it cook Friday night because yuh know, normally I would go to town on Saturday. Right now is the last piece a lettuce mi husband a cut up so mi don’t know how mi a guh manage,” the woman said. “There are a few shops here but they are very low on grocery because they are feeding the entire community. Right now I don’t have any cash in hand and I cannot go to the ATM.”

Black said that she relayed her predicament to a friend who attempted to carry food to the community for her but was allegedly prevented from doing so by members of the security forces who have set up check points.

“There are people here who nuh have nothing at all and if yuh ever just walk to the foot of hill, yuh see some a the soldier dem a run you up back. Mi nah try make no contact, all mi did want was for the person to leave the bags and we collect it after dem leave, ” she said.

Morales Drive is described by some as the epicentre of the dreaded coronavirus because Patient Zero, a Jamaican visiting from the United Kingdom, arrived in the island on March 4 for a funeral was staying in the area. Prime Minister Holness said on Friday that care packages to include food, water and in some cases medicine, would be delivered to residents. Black said that she has been told that packages are being delivered but she is yet to get any.

“I heard that others get but it doesn’t reach around my side yet, it seems, because mi and other people around mi nuh get anything or have anything leave. Mi honestly nuh have nuh problem with them doing what they have to do to control the virus, but nuff a what dem a talk say nah happen,” she said.

* Name change on request.

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