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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, Reef TV, KREM, and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Belize Now, Talk Ah Di Town, and other specials.


The San Pedro Sun

Sargassum slowly washing up on Belizean shores
The sargassum seaweed is slowly making its presence known on the windward shores of Ambergris Caye. According to satellite images, large mats have been spotted far out on the Atlantic Ocean, entering the warm waters of the Caribbean Sea, to then inundate the region with tons of the brown algae. Island authorities are aware of the looming threat and are considering the necessary precautions to deal with the matter if its presence escalates. Mayor Daniel Guerrero stated that a busy sargassum season can be expected this year.

Economic Oversight Team provides update on Unemployment Relief Program
The Economic Oversight Team (EOT) has approved a total of 40,453 applications for unemployment relief, all of which have been sent to the Social Security Board (SSB) for payment. SSB has processed 37,696 payments to approved applicants. Of this, 34,915 approved applicants have been successfully paid by direct deposit or top-up card. In addition, 15,438 of those persons, who received their first payment before April 18, 2020, have now received their second payment. SSB continues to process payments and all remaining approved applications are expected to be processed by the end of May 6th.

Various Belizean Sources

mzz

Caye Caulker Soup Kitchen day Location
Friday, May 8th Meal Pick up location: Barrier Reef Sports Bar& Grill. Times: Village: 11:00-11:45 am, Bahia: 11:45 am-12:30 pm. Thank you for bringing your containers! and bags!

SSB Scholarship Program 2020
The Social Security Board's 2020 Scholarship Program is open, so now's the time to apply for one of their many scholarships. "The SSB Scholarship Program 2020 is now officially open. Apply for a SSB Scholarship today via our Online Scholarship Portal at https://secure.socialsecurity.org.bz/sms/ Learn more about how to apply and the documents needed here: https://www.socialsecurity.org.bz/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/Scholarship-Brochure-Final_compressed.pdf Eligibility for SSB scholarships: - Born Belizean - Accepted to an Educational Institution in Belize - Exhibit academic potential - Demonstrate Financial need - First-year students only Apply today!! Deadline for applications is June 26, 2020. Only ONLINE applications accepted."

Story of Tzukan and Chaak
The ancient legend tells that of all the snakes that inhabited the Earth, Tzukán , protector of grottos and cenotes , was unique for its large size and mysticism. During the first drought of the Maya empire, thousands of years ago, Chaac , Lord of the Rain , was entrusted to collect the water from the subsoil and take it to the rest of the Maya empire. Chaac mounted a winged beast and looked for the precious liquid everywhere, but the lakes , rivers and cenotes were dry. Where was the water ?

The Artist of the Day, Elsworth Castillo
Over the years I have had the privilege of playing with and for a vast amount of Belizean and International artists including Lord Rhaburn, Mr. Peters, Andy Palacio, Paul Nabor, Bredda David, Leela Vernon, Michael Hyde, Dickie Straughan, Calypso Rose, Lady Patra, Lady Saw, Byron Lee & The Dragonaires, Judy Boucher, Eddie Lovette, Junior Reid (Black Uhuru), Mykal Rose (Black Uhuru), Oscar B, Liam Teague and many, many more. I have also been honored to play throughout the length and breadth of this country and for the Belizean communities in the US, Taiwan and Europe as well as bringing Belizean music to our neighbors in Mexico, Cuba, Panama and Guatemala.

Corozal artist Kimberly Griffith
As part of our Thursday Art & Soul Series we are delighted to showcase Corozal artist Kimberly Griffith. Kimberly's creativity has spanned decades including various genres as she developed and honed her skills into creating a fantastic line of botanical jewelry. The brand - Sub Umbra Jewelry focuses on the mahogany seed pod as well as other organic materials in which she creates one of a kind treasures. Her most recent work is a line of hand-painted coconut shells titled - Cultural Divas! You can kindly contact Kimberly via the Sub Umbra Jewelry facebook page or call 604-6604. Kimberly's home studio is located along Miami Beach in Corozal Town. Mothers Day is almost here, this a great opportunity to purchase that special handcrafted item for mom.

Is your child feeling stressed over the COVID-19 situation?
We want to help! Give us a call: 226-2936 and ask for Veronica.

Happy Teacher's Appreciation Week
Thank you to all the teachers of San Pedro and all of Belize for all their hard work!

Conch Season Remains Closed
The Belize Fisheries Department hereby reminds the public and fishers in particular that in accordance with Statutory Instrument No. 54 of 2012, the queen conch (Strombus gigas) fishery remains closed as declared by the Minister of Fisheries, Forestry, the Environment and Sustainable Development on March 27, 2020, and will remain closed until midnight of September 30, 2020.

U.S. Embassy Belmopan Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Keith Gilges departed Belize today
U.S. Embassy Belmopan Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. Keith Gilges departed Belize today, May 7, 2020, to receive non-life-threatening but urgent medical care, unrelated to COVID-19, pursuant to the advice of physicians in Belize and the United States . Management Officer Robert Peck has assumed the role of Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. for U.S. Embassy Belmopan until Chargé Gilges returns to Belize. Before his departure, Chargé Gilges offered sincere thanks for the many messages that he has received wishing him a speedy recovery and expressed hope that circumstances will allow him to quickly return to Belize.

Caye Caulker RC School opening 3 days a week for school matters
Dear Parents, Jesus is risen, Alleluia! Please take notice that Caye Caulker R. C. School's office will be open weekly on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays starting next week, May 12, 2020, from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. for school matters. Parents will be expected to be wearing a face mask, sanitizing their hands at the school's gate and practicing the six feet social distance while on the school's compound in order to be attended to. If a phone call can solve your issue please do so between these hours. Please do not bring your children along with you. One person per visit.

COVID-19 update from the Office of the Director of Health Services
This is our update for today. Our expanded screening has started as we have moved away from tracing contacts. Our work continues! Continue to practice physical distancing, wash your hands and avoid touching your face.

Mother's Day Raffle from the Caye Caulker Soup Kitchen and the Belize Chocolate Company
In honor of all the wonderful island Moms, we will be raffling off this amazing gift basket. All of the Mothers that are on our meal list will be automatically entered. Not a Mom on meal list? Raffle tickets may be purchased Friday, May 8th for $1 BZ, with all proceeds to benefit our progarm. Tickets may be purchased during our working hours at the Barrier Reef Sports Bar on Friday ( 10am -12:30ish) and the Belize Chocolate Company on Friday, 1pm-4pm Raffle will be drawn this Mother's Day, Sunday, May 10th during our lunch hours

DFC COVID-19 Survey
On April 24, 2020, the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) along with the Development Finance Corporation (DFC) held a virtual meeting with Tourism Stakeholders to discuss financial and technical support for the tourism industry. As a follow up please find below a message from the Development Finance Corporation (DFC).

Corozal Community Hospital receives testing booth
From Minister of Health that will be used at the Accident and Emergency (A&E).

Saint Martin's Credit Union will be resuming normal hours on Monday
REGULAR WORKING HOURS RESUMES as of Monday 11 May 2020. Both branches will return to normal working hours including opening on Saturdays, sanitary and all other social distancing measures remain in place, including mandatory use of face mask. Loan interviews will continue to be by appointment only and via phone call. Please share.

Another day, another Fire
Yesterday twelve (12) of IA Park Ranger staff fought to control fires at the El Pilar Archaeological Reserves. Belize is currently grappling with a large number of wild and intentionally lit fires resulting in the IA having to constantly battle fires at our heavily forested archaeological reserves. However, times of adversity often brings people together.

Marine Ecosystem for guides by Phillip Leslie on June 15th
at 1:30 pm Join Zoom Meeting https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81000817635 Meeting ID: 810 0081 7635

Caye Caulker Bakery Opens Monday
Caye Caulker Bakery is happy to announce that our bakers are back on the island and we will be open for business on Monday. Our new opening hours will be 7:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. then 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Every customer is expected to wear a mask and practice social distancing to protect yourself and our staff.

Channel 7

Random Testing Starts, No New Positives
There are no new cases of COVID 19 tonight, the 25th day without a positive test.  And, the Ministry of Health reports that it has started expanding its screening.  The latest figurers show that 31 tests were done yesterday, and all of them came back negative.   This includes persons who were randomly tested as part of expanded screening.  The Ministry said this would focus on front-line personnel including customs and immigration.

Is 28 Days With No Positive Tests Possible
And if those tests also come back negative tomorrow, we would be at day 26 without a positive sample for COVID 19 being taken. 28 days is an important benchmark, because according to public health professionals it would mean the end of an outbreak.   But, what really does this signal, and what does it mean for all of us, living under curfew, or some type of quarantine?   Yesterday, the director of health Services told Jules Vasquez it definitely does not mean that it's time to relax because there are new cases coming over the event horizon:

Dr. Manza Not Ready For Relaxation
So, Dr. Manzanero warns that another case can still appear any day.  And that is what he has also advised thew National Task Force.  To that end, the Prime Minister will have a press conference tomorrow morning - and while some are hoping he will announce relaxed measures, the chief public health authority says that he is not comfortable with the concept of relaxing measures: "The word relaxation is a very touchy word, while everybody might want to relax it certainly means no relaxation for the health system it might actually mean the inverse effect..."

Mask Confusion
State of Emergency regulations became literally stifling over the weekend when the wearing of face or mouth coverings was made law - and infractions punishable by large fines.  It's for public health and the common good, but for many the law has been a challenge to abide by, but, abide they must or face those frightening fines.   Today Cherisse Halsall went to court to find many facing just that - and she examined the wider problem of wearing masks, but doing it the wrong way:  All these people waiting outside of court this morning weren't there for murder, robbery, theft, or any of major crimes. Most were there for the state of emergency violations. The cops picked up this man for failure to wear a mask.

Charged Twice For Breaking Curfew
And while at court our news team met two men who had been arrested for breach of curfew, one of them twice. After more than a month under a curfew, by now it should be reflexive to get indoors before 8:00.   But whether by necessity or misadventure, a small number of people continue to get caught out and about after curfew.    Shane Smith - On trial for breach of curfew "They caught me on Banak road by magazine where I went to drop bread and bun. That was about 6 o'clock.

Commissioner Cautions Cops
Yes, a police officer was charged and he is not the first lawman to be charged for violating the state of emergency regulations.  It's a problem for the commissioner of police, and today he put out a stern memorandum covering, quote, "non compliance with SI 62 by police officers."   In it, he stresses that officers are not wearing their masks and called it a breach of discipline.  

Slipping In Through The South
But, the biggest threat for COVID 19 to make an unwelcome appearance in Belize, is to come through our porous border.   We've been telling you a lot about illegal border crossings in northern Belize, which has left two people serving a three month sentence, and another in quarantine.  Then, there is concern that the western border could also become another problem area for illegal crossings. But, two incidents from yesterday are bringing focus on the south in the Toledo District, where 2 people were caught crossing into Belizean territory illegally.

Cops Smoking Out Cigarette Smugglers
And there are also threats out west - where the cigarette hustle is in full swing.  Yesterday at 12:30, police were monitoring a back road called Trek Stop Road, used by criminals to avoid the check point at the entrance to Succotz village.  They intercepted a 2008 Ford Explorer driven by a businessman from Santa Elena Town.

GOB & PSU: Tense and Tangled
Things are heating up between the Government and the Public Service Union and reports are that the Prime Minister will hold a press conference tomorrow to address what is becoming a tense and tangled dispute. As we told you last night, the dispute is basically over CIRCULAR NUMBER 5 from the Ministry of Finance sent out at the end of April.   It proposes for public officers to forego the salary increment for the 2020 to 2021 fiscal year.  The PSU wants it deferred - meaning they will get it back when government's finances improve.  

Cops Shot The Bull
21-year-old Edmund Bull was shot in the leg by police yesterday while attempting to escape a court warrant for his arrest.  Bull had attended Orange Walk's magistrate's court for what he and his family believed was a matter to do with a bicycle. He was accompanied by his sister Beverley Bull who witnessed his attempt to escape and the shot that stopped him in his tracks.  Here's her account of what she calls an unwarranted amount of force used against her brother:

Minor Charged For Taxi Murder
On Monday we took you to Orange Walk to hear from the family of Mathias Alpuche, a taxi driver from Trial Farm Village, Orange Walk who had been cruelly stabbed on the Honey Camp Road on Sunday, May 3, 2020. 

Guarding Northern Waters
Earlier in the news we told you how the police had arrested two persons for coming across the southern border into Toledo illegally. But, the focus has been principally on the norther - where it is a cultural and community practice to go across to the Mexican communities across the rio Hondo for contraband groceries and beer. Those in the communities along the Rio Hondo, cross that river like you cross the street to your neighbourhood grocery. And that's where the Coast Guard comes in.  Yesterday we asked the Deputy Commander about enforcement activities in the north:

20% Major Crime Decline
Looking now at Crime Statistics for April - figures for major crime are down - as you might expect in a month that saw a national curfew. Compared to 2019, Murders in April were down from 6 to 3, robbery down form 21 to 1, burglary down form 42 to 32, and theft down from 9 to 2.

KHMH Treating Cancer
Yesterday, the Social Security Board handed over a donation of 200 thousand dollars to the KHMH. That money will help to fund the completion of an oncology unit for the national referral hospital. Hospital administrators say that there is an increasing number of Belizeans with cancer who have turned to them. That has prompted the need for this new unit, which will offer more specialized treatment. The unit is much needed at this time because Belize's borders remain closed to entry and exit due to the COVID-19 threat.

Food For Far Flung Communities
The Belize Territorial Volunteers have established themselves as border activists who vigilantly police the borders of Toledo. But, over the past few weeks, and in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, they've taken the humanitarian initiatives to look after far-flung communities on the coast of the Toledo District.  They've been delivering donations of food to residents of these communities, and today, they went back to fishermen living in Barranco Village, and along the Temash and Moho Rivers. This recent donation of food was a collaborative effort between the BTV and OCEANA Belize, and with the help of our colleagues from PGTV News, we have a snapshot of the handing over of those supplies. 

Nurses Week Finds Nurses Strong
Nurses week has started and the Ministry of Health has circulated an infographic which provides some interesting figures on the medical practitioners who are called the "backbone of the health system." First off, there are 897 nursing personnel, including 593 nursing professionals and 304 nursing associates.

Channel 5

P.S.U. Holds Firm on Increments Despite FinSec’s Threat
There is an impasse tonight between the Public Service Union and the Government. The matter has been brewing for some weeks, but the union remains firmly rooted in its position [...]

P.S.U. – “Five Weeks into COVID it was Almost a Nightmare.”
The government, notwithstanding the COVID-19 crisis, has been struggling to meet its monthly wage bill for public officers and has proposed measures that would accrue three to five percent of [...]

P.S.U. & B.N.T.U. Meeting Tonight Before Responding to FinSec
A legal battle, says Vice President Flowers, is imminent should the prime minister proceed to amend the Public Service Regulations, since he does not have the authority under the existing [...]

P.U.P. Issues Message of Solidarity with the Public Service Union
The People’s United Party has also issued a message of solidarity with the Public Service Union. It says that the letter of ultimatum has no place in a democratic society [...]

American Duo Quarantined in Placencia
Belize remains with zero active cases of COVID-19. A second wave of the virus is expected to hit and with neighbouring countries expected to reach their peak, it is not [...]

Health Officials Say French Nationals, Who Were Out at Sea, Are of No Interest
Doctor Marvin Manzanero also spoke of French nationals who were out at sea for the past month. Since they had not come in contact with anyone from the affected countries, [...]

Belize to Be Hit by 2nd COVID-19 Wave
Officially, by Sunday, Belize should recover from the first wave. This would mean that after twenty-eight days, there have been no new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus.   Health officials, [...]

Random Testing for COVID-19 Continues
Random testing across the country for COVID-19 continues.  The Ministry of Health says that it has expanded screening as tracing contacts has ceased.  A total of one thousand, one hundred [...]

61 Persons including Officers Arrested for S.O.E. Violations
A police officer finds himself among a group of sixty other individuals who are the latest group charged in the police crackdown of violators of the state of emergency. The [...]

Orange Walk Police Shoots Man
The police department is at the front lines of enforcing the state of emergency. But ensuring compliance with the regulations has opened up opportunity for abuse. There is the well [...]

Belize City Youth Claims Police Brutality
A Belize City teenager also felt the wrath of the police at the beginning of the week. In this case, Karim Barona left his girlfriend’s house after five in the [...]

An Interagency Approach to Combating Illegal Crossings in the North
A total of three persons have now been charged for illegal entry into the country since the borders are closed; the most recent was on Wednesday.  Over the weekend, a [...]

Celebrating Mother’s Day in a Time of COVID-19
This Mother’s Day will be different for families across the country. Restaurants are not open to the public, travelling across district lines is not allowed, gatherings are limited in numbers, [...]

Fire! Fire! Western Belize is on fire!
Tonight, we share more from our trip out west to cover the fires that have been consuming large plots of farmlands and virgin forested areas.  A small group of concerned [...]

An Update on Caring for the Homeless
There are hundreds of persons who are homeless primarily in Belize City. At the start of the COVID crisis, they were transported to the MCC Grounds in Belize City to [...]

Fisherfolk in Corozal Gets Help from OCEANA Belize & Rotaract Club
Fisherfolk from the communities of Chunox, Copper Bank and Sarteneja are getting some much needed help on Friday.  Twenty-five deserving families will receive two weeks of food supply to relieve [...]

Healthy Living and Mask Etiquette
There weren’t many professions before the COVID-19 crisis that necessitated using masks, but now – or at least for now – it is an essential item for all of us. [...]

The Reporter

The Reporter announces its return to printed copy tomorrow, May 8th
We thank our customers for their patronage and continue to offer digital copy to those who are interested in receiving our weekly editions via whatsapp. To subscribe send us your name and number at 6725052.

LOVE FM

BCG operations during State of Emergency
Earlier in the news, we told you what the Belize Coast Guard has been up to during the fight against COVID-19. As we noted, when it comes to protecting the country it is the BCG’s responsibility to secure our waters.

BCG works with foreign navies
The Belize Coast Guard does work alongside counterparts from other countries. According to the Commandant, Captain Elton Bennett, they refer to this exercise as defence engagement.

Director of Health says the borders need to remain closed until
With the announcement of no active cases of COVID-19 in Belize and with the absence of clusters or an increase in persons with respiratory illness, Belize may have developed a false sense of security when it comes to the pandemic. To date, several preventative measures are in place including the wearing of masks and regular hand washing and sanitization.

Captain Elton Bennett must wait for Admiral rank
Many people have had to put their plans for travels and other major events on hold due to COVID-19. The same goes for Commandant of the Belize Coast Guard, Captain Elton Bennett.

COVID-19 recovered patients to be re-tested soon
Sixteen of the eighteen patients who were confirmed with COVID-19 have all been declared as recovered in Belize. Health officials, however, are still monitoring these patients as they will be re-tested soon as explained by the Director of Health Services, Dr. Marvin Manzanero.

How the BCG protects itself from COVID-19
The Belize Coast Guard (BCG) is one of the arms of the Ministry of National Security, tasked with safe guarding Belize’s waters. As part of the COVID-19 relief measures, they have been keeping borders secured and maintaining a presence out at sea.

PUP’s Albert Vaughn legally served for allegations of defamation on Facebook
From a Facebook spat to a legal letter requiring an apology and compensation. PUP City Councillor Albert Vaughan was reportedly being sought by police to be given a letter from the legal firm, Barrow and Williams after he shared a post on Facebook indicating that a UDP political figure was infected with COVID-19 and behaving recklessly.

Year of the Nurse and Midwives; the inspiring stories of today’s heroes
Nurses around the globe are being recognized this week as a crucial part of society. Nurses Week began yesterday and will run for up until May 12. We join Reporter Naim Borges for a look into the profession, its challenges, and successes.

BNTU in solidarity with the PSU
The proposal for an increment freeze for teachers was also sent from the government to the Belize National Teachers Union(BNTU). The Public Service Union, however, is the only one that outrightly rejected the Government’s ultimatum. This, however, does not indicate that they are in this fight alone. At least that is what the Vice President of the PSU, Dean Flowers is saying.

The PSU is standing its ground against GOB proposals
The Public Service Union (PSU) has once again rejected the Government’s proposal for an increment freeze for public officers. The proposal was made to the union as part of cost-saving exercises the Government embarked on amid the Covid-19 pandemic and the need for austerity measures.

The San Ignacio/Santa Elena Town Council Is Laying Off Ten Of Their Employees Due To A Lack Of Revenue
A total of 10 persons were laid off at the San Ignacio/Santa Elena Town Council effective April 30. According to Mayor Earl Trapp, this had to be done for the council to reduce its expenditure.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Saluting nurses in Belize and the world: Nurses Week 2020
International Nurses Week 2020 began on May 6 and will run until Tuesday, May 12 […]

Several organizations and families benefit from COVID-19 relief courtesy Oceana
Photo Credit: Wil Maheia As organizations all over Belize do their part in helping people […]

Belizean saxophonist, Allan McCoy to host virtual Mother’s Day concert
Mother’s Day will be celebrated this Sunday, May 10, 2020. Belizean saxophonist, Allan “Di Real” […]

Conch season remains closed
The Belize Fisheries Department reminds the public and fishers in particular that, in accordance with […]

BTB’s “Dear Belize” campaign keeping travelers interested in Belize during lockdown
While global travel is still restricted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Belize Tourism Board […]

Hurricane season coming; above-average activity predicted amidst COVID-19 concerns
The countdown is on for the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season, which begins on June 1. […]

Belize City getting a handle on the homeless
As much as Belizeans may complain about our current restrictions and issues with finding food […]

Municipal update: Revenue slowly recovering; Traffic Department returns; sanitation stands firm
Bernard Wagner, Mayor of Belize City, says the Belize City Council is “cautiously optimistic” about […]

CitCo floats restructuring of Municipal Bonds
The administration of Mayor Bernard Wagner is confronting having to restructure both its own Municipal […]

Social Security Board donates $200,000 to KHMH for Oncology/Chemotherapy Unit
On May 6, the Social Security Board donated $200,000 to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital […]

San Ignacio & Santa Elena Town Council terminates 10 employees
A leaked letter of termination surfaced on social media yesterday stating that “as a result […]

Hands of Love Caye Caulker donates food hampers to over 180 families
Hands of Love Caye Caulker continues to assist families with food hampers. This week, the […]

More than 25 people arrested for not wearing masks as police continue cracking down on state of emergency violations
A total of 61 people were arrested yesterday for violating the State of emergency Regulations, […]

Blogs

Doyle’s Delight, The Highest Peak in Belize
Although it’s mostly a technicality, Doyle’s Delight in the Toledo District is the highest point in Belize. Measuring some 3,687 feet (1,124 meters) high, Doyle’s Delight is a peak in the Maya Mountain range that span much of Belize. Because Doyle’s Delight is just a spur that is slightly higher than the surrounding mountain range rather than a true peak, it had no official name for most of Belize’s history. The current name was coined by the legendary animal rights activist and founder of the Belize Zoo Sharon Matola in 1989. Referencing a quote from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (the author of the Sherlock Holmes books) book “The Lost World” that refers to Belize as a “wild and wonderful country,” Matola named the area Doyle’s Delight. Although recent scientific measurements have revealed that it is actually eight feet (two and a half meters) shorter, Victoria’s Peak was long considered the highest point in Belize.

Birding Soars Amid COVID-19
With COVID-19 restrictions continuing on, interest in bird-watching has soared as those indoors notice a fascinating world just outside their windows. In Belize, now is the perfect time to bird-watch as hundreds of species migrate back to America and Canada. This spike in migration gives new birders a front-row seat to one of nature’s greatest shows – birds in transit. With an nearly 600 bird species and six internationally recognized Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs), Belize is one of Central America’s premier birding destinations.

International Sourcesizz

West Michigan family asking community to 'Adopt Belize' due to lack of travel during pandemic
The COVID pandemic is, of course, global. And while we are understandably concerned about our families and our communities, other places and people need help, too. A West Michigan man in another part of the world knows that very well. At the beginning of the pandemic, Travel Belize put out this promotional video. COVID-19 has paralyzed the country's economy, which is mostly based on tourism. But other economies are being hit for other reasons.

Latin America and Caribbean: Tax revenue under threat amid deteriorating regional outlook
Tax revenues in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) increased to 23.1% of GDP on average in 2018, according to the new edition of Revenue Statistics in Latin America in the Caribbean published today. However, these gains are now under threat as a result of the region’s deteriorating fiscal outlook, which has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and the global economic crisis. The increase of 0.4 percentage points (p.p.) from their level in 2017 is the highest level of tax revenues ever recorded in the region.

Concerns Raised About Prolonged Drought In The Caribbean
The Barbados-based Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology says there is “significant concern”, at least until the end of May, about the continued impact of a prolonged drought period on the region. In the May edition of its Caribbean Drought Bulletin released Thursday, the institute said that during the first three months of this year “there was a clear distinction between the wetter northern and drier southern islands of the eastern Caribbean.

Caribbean tourism has been decimated by COVID-19. But the private sector can cushion the blow
We are all in the same COVID-19 storm, but not all countries are in the same boat. Here in the Bahamas, 70% of our GDP is generated from tourism. Tourist-based economies like ours throughout the Caribbean region have limited social safety nets. This means our people, economy and future are far more likely to be wrecked by COVID-19 than nations with more diversified economies. Today, airports and hotels here are shuttered, unemployment throughout the region is soaring, and nobody knows when these tourism sector jobs may come back.

Videos

  • Channel 5 Obituaries - MARCELLA ENNIS WADE, 2min.

  • Belize Coast Guard COVID-19 Measures, 3min. Captain Bennett also explained other operations that the BCG have been doing to keep Belize safe and COVID-19 free. To date, the Belize Coast Guard still maintains a presence on Caye Caulker.

  • International Nurses Week, 2.5min. On the occasion of International Nurses Week celebrated this week, this video was done in honour of all our hardworking and dedicated nurses countrywide. Video credit, Nurse Estella Flowers.

  • Captains Trade Sailboats to Sail to Belize Atoll, 11min. We're still traveling with our buddy boats; Whipper Snapper and Livin Life. There's a calm day so we decide to mix things up and swap everyone's boats around! It turns out to be one of the best days we've had. It was a blast!

  • TAS Belize Celebrates 10 Year | Anniversary Dinner, 3.5min. On the 28th of November 2019, we had our 10 year anniversary dinner with some past and present staff and their families. We laughed, ate, shared memories, and honored each other.

  • Artifacts of East Indians in Belize - Documentary film, 7min.

  • Playing with Dolphins in Belize, 1min.

  • Maya Island Air Cessna 208B Caravan Flight Caye Caulker to Belize City Philip S.W. Goldson 2M2133, 5min.

  • Interview with Lincoln Westby - master Permit guide to Belize, 2min. This is part one of a "how to" video on fly fishing for Permit in Belize with world renowned expert Lincoln Westby.

  • Painting Mommy Manatee and baby, 72min. Painting Mommy Manatee and baby