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Coronavirus: New Legal Powers Coming

Jersey Ministers will given more powers to protect islanders from the coronavirus pandemic, if approved by the States Assembly next week.

The proposed powers include:

* Allowing the Treasury Minister to withdraw money from the Consolidated Fund in emergency circumstances.

* Allowing the Bailiff to withdraw or add conditions to public events that have already been granted permission.

* Allowing the Environment Minister to shut down any public gatherings if deemed a health risk.

* Giving care providers and the Care Commission the necessary flexibility to continue serving vulnerable Islanders with a reduced workforce.

A series of measures that are also due to be brought forward by the Council of Ministers from next week include:

* Forcing people to be screened or assessed for coronavirus

* Making people self-isolate, using reasonable force, if required

* The Health Department will be able to employ retired doctors.

* The Health Minister will get the power to issue a serious shortage protocol for prescription medicine.

* Self-employed islanders will be able to defer payment of social security contributions without it affecting their benefits and entitlements.

"During these unprecedented times, it’s essential that we’re able to act quickly in order to keep Islanders as safe as possible." - Senator John Le Fondre, Chief Minister.

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