Attorneys-at-Law have been now added to the long list of essential workers who can still go into their offices despite lockdown measures to curtail the spread of the novel Coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Last week Friday, Head of the National COVID-19 Task Force, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo said that he had received a formal request from the Guyana Bar Association, to classify Attorneys-at-Law as essential workers who are required to work during the curfew hours of 6pm to 6am.

By way of an amendment dated April 20, 2020, made to the emergency COVID-19 measures published in the Official Gazette, Minister of Public Health Volda Lawrence, added lawyers to essential services which may carry on operations for 24 hours. They include the following:

(a)hospitals, healthcare and medical services including pharmacies, drug stores and private veterinary services;
(b) nursing homes, orphanages, shelters and other related care centres;
(c) immigration;
(d) the Judiciary;
(e) the Parliament;
(f) the Diplomatic Corps;
(g) the Revenue Authority;
(h) the Maritime Administration Department;
(i) the National Emergency Operations Centre;
(j) water supply services including the collection, storage, purification and distribution of water for public use;
(k) the disciplined forces;
(l) prison services;
(m) solid waste management, sewerage and janitorial services;
(n) air traffic control;
(o) Demerara Harbour Bridge and Berbice River Bridge;
(p) hotels and accommodation;
(q) electricity and energy services including the oil and gas sector and those who provide services to the oil and gas sector;
(r) businesses that ensure global continuity of supply of mining and petroleum materials and products (e.g metals and minerals such as bauxite, gold and diamonds);
(s) mining and petroleum development operations, production and processing;
(t) mineral and petroleum exploration and development;
(u) mining and petroleum supply and services that support supply chains in the mining and petroleum industries;
(v) businesses and operations that engage in the cutting, processing and preparation of trees into lumber and ensure continuity of supply of lumber products;
(w) security services, including private security;
(x) telecommunications providers including internet, telephone and call centre operators, media houses, broadcasting and the Guyana National Printers Ltd.;
(y) port operations limited to bulk marketing operations and loading and offloading only, or marine vessels, petroleum vessels, ships, bulk and containerised vessels;
(z) port service logistics and freight services, including transportation and delivery services to and from wharves, terminals and ports;
(aa) transportation of dry goods for wholesale delivery;
(bb) construction services where their workers are engaged in the construction of health care facilities;
(cc) factories, manufacturers or distributors of food supplies (particularly producers or processors of rice, sugar, poultry and fish) and essential medical supplies where the Minister of Public Health has determined that the continuation of these operations do not pose a risk to the public health;
(dd) Workers necessary to keep furnaces and kilns operating safely in manufacturing operations that are not listed as essential.
(ee) Services of Attorneys-at-Law


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