Lloyd maintains govt not making COVID-19 vaccinations mandatory
NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Minister of Education Jeffrey Lloyd said yesterday that any private school that may seek to make vaccinations mandatory for students must make that arrangement with parents and students.
Lloyd was speaking to reporters outside Cabinet on the matter and insisted that his ministry continues to be guided by the scientists and officials at the Ministry of Health.
“They would have to be like everyone else — guided by the health authorities and what is the law,” he said, pointing directly to private school institutions.
“If there is an arrangement between them and their client base, meaning parents and students, that that kind of imposition can be made, then that is a determination between them and that client base.”
Lloyd underscored that the government continues to reiterate COVID-19 vaccinations are not mandatory.
“What private circumstances decide to [do] is entirely up to them and I’m sure, as you would have heard, some of that decision may be tested in court,” he added.
As of July 2, nearly 96,000 doses of AstraZeneca had been administered — 59,731 individuals with one dose and 36,261 individuals who have been fully vaccinated.
A total of 64,642 doses were administered on New Providence, 13,737 on Grand Bahama and 12,613 on the Family Islands.
The National COVID-19 Vaccine Consultative Committee said there has been an 86.1 percent rate of individuals receiving their first vaccine and returning for the second jab.
Though the jab is currently not a necessity for Bahamians, the government has continued to urge residents to get vaccinated.
In recent months, there have been increasing cases of COVID-19 among young and adolescents.
The Pfizer vaccine is currently the only EUL-approved vaccine for administration to individuals under the age of 18.
Although not confirmed, The Bahamas expects to receive a tranche of Pfizer doses from the United States.