(CMR) The legislative assembly members have approved amendments to the Public Health Law that would increase fines for any persons who breach home-isolation regulations to $10,000 or up to two years in prison. A possible daily fine of $500 per day can also be levied for ongoing infractions.
The more strict measures were passed on Friday to deter those taking advantage of the home quarantine option from breaking the law. Since the country introduced the new phased re-opening there has been one known breach to persons in-home quarantine. However, concerns have been expressed that the previous $1,000 fine and six months imprisonment was not sufficient.
Health Minister Dwayne Seymour shared that the measures were necessary to protect the community from any COVID-19 spread from incoming travelers. The option to home isolate is part of the newly available options as the country moves through its phased re-opening process. Minister Seymour noted that during cabinet discussions larger amounts up to $50,000 had been discussed but they settled on the lowerest recommendation of $10,000.
Opposition Leader Arden McLean shared that he believed $3,000 would be a more reasonable deterrence. The bill will now move to committee stage, before passage. Backbencher from North Side, Ezzard Miller, suggested one small change but otherwise was in agreement with the amount.