WhatsApp group for hoteliers, bar owners launched

- Tourism bodies urge strict adherence to new measures

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The Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) and the Tourism & Hospitality Association of Guyana (THAG) are urging members of the hospitality sector, as well as patrons to adhere to the recently stipulated guidelines outlined in the National Emergency Safety Measures No. 20. 

Through these measures, supported by the Laws of Guyana, the Government has embarked on a more multifaceted, strategic approach to ensure that Guyana achieves herd immunity. By reaching its 80% – 85% vaccination target, Guyana, and by extension, its tourism and hospitality sectors will be able to resume some semblance of normalcy again as it works towards a safe reopening and operations. 

Director of the GTA, Carla James-Vantull reinforced the importance of persons becoming vaccinated and reassures stakeholders in the sector that the GTA is noting the continued challenges with operating during these trying times and available to provide whatever support that they may need during this time – 

“The GTA recognises the challenges that establishments have been facing since the implementation of these measures and would like to commend those establishments that have taken the necessary steps to ensure that their businesses provide safe services. As safety measures are rolled out, it is important to provide the most up to date information and get feedback on how these systems are working.

“As such, we have created an outlet to receive feedback from owners and managers of these establishments through a WhatsApp group. Here, they will be able to have their concerns heard and addressed in real-time. We are here to help so we hope that businesses will continue to reach out to us. This pandemic is affecting everyone, so we are all in this together, and it is only together we will be able to make it through the end of the tunnel.” 

Harrinand Persaud, the President of THAG emphasised that – “The Tourism and Hospitality Association of Guyana fully appreciates the magnitude of these revised guidelines on our tourism and hospitality businesses in a peak period. However, we also recognise that these efforts are necessary for the health and safety of all. Vaccinations protect us all from becoming very ill. It ensures that we can continue to safely reopen and operate our businesses, to support the livelihoods of our staff and families. We call on all patrons to be supportive of the operations who for their part are complying with the guidelines set by the Ministry of Health and National Covid 19 Task Force that they may continue to serve you.”

The GTA and THAG have noted with concern the public bashing of restaurants, bars, hotels and other dining establishments for implementing these measures and take the opportunity to highlight that businesses have no option but to comply because it is law. Establishments that fail to comply and enforce these measures will be subject to closure for the period of one month. 

The GTA and THAG urge the public to cooperate and support these businesses that are already experiencing challenging times but are trying to stay in operation to save jobs, protect the livelihoods of single mothers, and continue to contribute to the overall recovery of the economy. 

It is imperative that everyone plays their part to educate their peers and family or seek the clarity they need to understand and heighten the importance of vaccination, and how critical its role is in curbing the spread of the deadly coronavirus and preventing serious COVID-19-related illnesses and ultimately saving lives. 

Owners and managers are asked to reach out to the Guyana Tourism Authority’s WhatsApp number (592-665-8570) for access to join the Group Chat for the Hospitality Sector (Restaurants, Bars, Banquet/Conference Facilities, Cinemas, Casinos & Betting Shops). (GTA & THAG press release)

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