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Volunteers from Bonaire on Statia

ST. EUSTATIUS - Sunday, September 25th at 5.30 pm a group of volunteers from, among others, Rijksdienst Caribisch Nederland arrived at St. Eustatius. 

The group was welcomed by acting Island Governor Julian Woodley. The volunteers are led by the local fire chief and the Disaster Committee coordinator and will assist in the reconstruction of the island after the passage of hurricanes Irma and Maria.

This is the second group of volunteers. The first group arrived on Sunday, September 17th and returned home last Saturday. (RCN Caribbean Netherlands)

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Mandatory School bus association meeting on Tuesday

PHILIPSBURG— All members of the school bus association and current owners of school busses providing services to the Ministry of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport (MECYS) are hereby invited to a mandatory meeting with MECYS Recovery Team on Tuesday, September 26th, 2017 at the New Government Building on the first floor at 2:00pm.

Prior to the meeting, all school bus drivers are required to submit an assessment of the respective fleet of busses to determine the safety and operational status of the fleet.

The assessment must be submitted by 2:00pm on Monday September 25th, 2017 at the New Government Building, in the Ministry ECYS’ designated meeting room on the ground floor. 

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Garbage Separation & Disposal 

POND ISLAND - The Ministry of VROMI is reminding all residents of Sint Maarten to dispose their garbage properly by separating it in three categories as follows household garbage which goes in the large bins, large debris which goes next to the bin and zinc which also goes in a separate heap next to the bin.

The separation of the garbage will help in the speedy cleanup of the island. The Ministry of VROMI commends all persons that have contributed to the overall clean up thus far. 

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CPS Information: Health Services during Curfew. Water and Food Hygiene. Mosquitoes. Breastfeeding your Infant

PHILIPSBURG - This message is brought to you by The Collective Prevention Services Department within the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labor.

Health Services During Curfew

During curfew hours, emergency health services can be accessed at the Emergency Room of the Sint Maarten Medical Center.  Please remember that this is only for emergency.  For routine, non-emergency issues, please see your general practitioner or family physician, and for ambulance assistance call 919.

Water Hygiene

Avoid getting sick! Make your water safe before drinking.  Drinking unsafe water can cause disease, mainly vomiting and diarrhea.  It is best to use bottled water for drinking.  All other water (from the tap, cistern or wells) should be boiled first, or treated with chlorine for 30 minutes before drinking.  If the water looks dirty or smells bad: Do not drink it at all!

Water from the tap or from cisterns should be brought to a boil and then keep boiling for at least one minute!  If you cannot boil the water disinfect it with chlorine.  Use household Clorox, for example, take two tea spoons of Clorox for every gallon of water mix it and let stand for 30 minutes before drinking.

Food Hygiene

Eating spoiled food can make you sick!

In general, if the food looks bad and or it smells bad: do not eat it!  Discard spoiled food appropriately and remember to always cook all your food thoroughly, especially meats, poultry and fish.  Always wash your hands thoroughly with clean water and soap before touching your face, eyes and or mouth.

Mosquitoes

Eliminating mosquito breeding

Mosquitoes can carry viruses that make us ill.  There is a lot of debris and stagnant water presently creating breeding sites for mosquitoes, it is important for all of us to keep around our homes and yards clean.  How can this be achieved: Get rid of stagnant water, get rid of tires in your yard or put them under a cover or recycle them.  Anything that holds water in and around the yard should be turned upside down, or removed or discarded.  Check your water spout, gutters and unclog them.  Keep water drums and barrels tightly covered.

Breastfeeding Your Infant

Breastfeeding your infant is always the preferred way to feed your child

Why? 

Because: it is nutritionally perfect, it is readily available without dependence on supplies, it is protective against diseases, especially diarrhea and respiratory infections, it is also the right temperature.  Hormones released during breastfeeding helps relieve maternal stress and anxiety.  After a disaster, it is especially important to breastfeed and it is far more preferable than formula.  Please continue to breast feed!  It is important for you and your baby.

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All TelEm Group personnel report for work Monday morning

POND ISLAND - TelEm Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mr. Kendall Dupersoy, is instructing all company personnel to report for work 9.00 a.m. Monday September 25th, to begin the process of normal work routines following the passage of Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria.

Shortly before the passage of Hurricane Irma, all staff were ordered home until further notice to prepare for the storm.

On Friday, Mr. Dupersoy said the company’s main building on Pond Island is now receiving water and power from GEBE and also the main backup generator is in good working condition. The TelEm Group building has also been cleared of debris and windows and doors have been boarded up where necessary.

“The work environment is once again safe and in a state to resume work,” said Mr. Dupersoy.

“I continue to thank all of our staff who have been rendering service to the general public soon after passage of Hurricane Irma under very poor conditions. Now we are ready to have all staff on board to continue with our regular work in providing service to our customers and to the general public,” said Mr. Dupersoy.

He said staff will be dealing with a backlog of administrative tasks, billing and other works that have been on hold since the passage of both weather systems and can now be better handled with all available personnel back at their posts.

The TelEm Group boss says even employees who are still experiencing problems following both hurricanes should come in to hear what management has to say and to speak with their manager(s) and with the Human Resources & Development Department so that their situation can be better assessed.

The CEO expects the first order of the day on Monday to be an address to staff about the present situation regarding damage caused to the TelEm Group infrastructure by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, Status of personnel following the storm and actions taken by management to assist personnel, Status of the TelEm Group main building and other locations, actions taken to provide service to the general public, recognition of works carried out by personnel shortly after the storms and management plans for the coming weeks and months. 

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Dutch Military carries out Night-time Reconnaissance Flights

PHILIPSBURG – The Dutch Military currently on the island assisting the Government of Sint Maarten after the country was struck by Hurricane Irma on September 6, has been carrying out night-time criminal suppression reconnaissance flights throughout the country over the first 10-days after the passing of the hurricane.

Observers suspect that the flights are in connection with surveilling criminal activity.  A large search light is used to scan neighborhoods, streets and buildings for any unusual activity.

An observer in the field of law enforcement said that the measure seems to be part of a law enforcement strategy to assist with the enforcement of the curfew from 7.00 PM to 6.00 AM on the Dutch side of the island.

Some neighborhoods are still without electricity.  Public street lights in most areas are not working. Prior to Hurricane Irma, the aforementioned provided a level of safety and security throughout the country.

The night-time helicopter patrols are an asset to law enforcement as it can direct Police to an area where there is unusual activity taking place that can be further investigated by a ground unit.

The measure is most welcome by the Sint Maarten community to keep criminal elements at bay.

SOUALIGA NEWSDAY REPORT

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Statia Act. Governor welcomes Bonaire Volunteers

ST. EUSTATIUS - On Sunday September 17th, a group of six RCN and Public Entity of Bonaire civil servants, who have volunteered to assist St. Eustatius in the recovery work following the passage of hurricane Irma on September 6th, arrived on the island.

Included in the group were Custom Officers who arrived on the island to relieve their colleagues on Saba and St. Eustatius. 

Acting Island Governor Julian Woodley met with the group on Monday September 18th at 14.00 to brief them on the work they will be doing and to thank them for responding to the call for volunteers. The group of volunteers will remain on St. Eustatius for one week.

Kingdom Representative, Gilbert Isabella, was at Flamingo Airport on Sunday to wish the volunteers success in their efforts. Act. Island Governor Woodley is pleased with the extra hands and the expertise to assist with specific projects in the aftermath of Irma.

“I thank the RCN and the Public Entity of Bonaire for granting their civil servants time off to assist us on St. Eustatius”. (RCN Caribbean Netherlands)

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SZV OFFICE CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE. HOW TO CONTACT SZV

PHILIPSBURG - Social & Health Insurances SZV would like to inform its customers and the public that our offices located at the Harbour View Building are CLOSED to the public until further notice. We kindly ask persons NOT to visit our offices as our offices are not operational to assist persons at the moment. Our team is working diligently towards re-opening, as we are faced with the challenge of securing stable power and water sources at the moment.

Contacting SZV is possible via the Facebook page where daily updates are posted and our customer service is responsive to all private Facebook messages.  

The customer service phone lines are currently NOT operational. We aim to have our phone lines operational as soon as possible. We apologize for any inconvenience caused, which are beyond our control at the moment.

Customers who have evacuated to Curacao can use the following numbers to contact for medical related information:

  • Dr. Marly Oosterhof – tel.: (+5999) 522 4957 or
    • Ms. Tessa Jansen - tel.: (+5999) 516 6663
    • Mw. Joanne Schet – tel.: (+5999) 516 6663

SZV Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SZV.org/

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Police arrest eight persons in connection with violating curfew

PHILIPSBURG - Even though a 24-hour curfew until further notice went into effect prior to the passing of hurricane “Maria”, to safeguard the safety and security of the community, numerous persons did not respect this measure and ventured out on the public streets anyhow, according to a press release from the Police.

As a result, hereof on Wednesday September 20th, at approximately 09.45 a.m. a total eight persons were arrested on the A.J.C. Brouwers road and Bush road for the violation of the curfew.

One of these persons was also caught with a quantity of marihuana in his possession, ready for distribution. The marihuana was confiscated for further investigation. A female among the group is residing illegally on the island and was handed over to the Immigration Department.

All persons were taken to the Police Headquarters in Philipsburg where they were lead before an Acting Prosecutor and then to taken through the entire process.

The Police Department continues to warn the entire community of the consequences when one violates a curfew. When arrested for violating a curfew you will be arrested, you will be taken to police station and you will be lead before an Acting prosecutor who will decide how the case will be handled further.

You can receive punishments such as a very hefty fine or many hours of community service without compensation among others. This whole process can take several hours and may cause unnecessary delays and inconveniences. Stay at home until the curfew is lifted. (Sint Maarten Police Force)

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Prime Minister of Dominica Meets with Marlin. Pledges Support

POND ISLAND - On Sunday morning, the Prime Minister of Dominica, the Honorable Roosevelt Skerrit paid a brief courtesy visit to the Prime Minister of Sint Maarten, the Honorable William Marlin.

The Dominica Prime Minister said that he had to come personally to express sympathies to the government and people of Sint Maarten, because of the longstanding bond and friend ship with Sint Maarten.

The Prime Minister expressed the willingness of his government to assist with water, dry goods and sometime next week, a shipment of provisions, plantains and avocados will also be sent.

Sint Maarten’s Prime Minister gave a brief overview on the damage sustained and explained some of what was done already and what is still ongoing. He then thanked the Dominica Prime Minister on behalf of the government and people of Sint Maarten.

On Sunday morning, Prime Minister Marlin also received a courtesy visit from the Chinese Consul general stationed in Curacao.

The Consul said he immediately got approval to cut short his vacation in order to come to Sint Maarten to see firsthand the damage that was caused by Hurricane Irma.

He expressed sympathies to the people and government of Sint Maarten on behalf of the Chinese government.

He said that he had briefly met with a group of Chinese business people on the island and they all expressed that they will stay on the island and contribute to the rebuilding.

About 28 Chinese citizens, among them several expecting mothers and newborns left the island for a short period.

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