Jersey’s Chamber of Commerce says that the Minister for Infrastructure is insistent that Broad Street remains closed “facilitating physical distancing according to the advice from the Medical Officer for Health for as long as it is deemed necessary”.
In response to the increasing levels of frustration of Jersey Chamber members we have spent the last two months seeking clarity on the actual reasons why Broad Street has been closed off. Following a lengthy process of being passed from department to department, Chamber enquiries can reveal the Minister for Health has not recommended that Broad Street should be closed and that the Medical Officer for Health has not asked for this either.
Jersey Chamber of Commerce Retail and Supply Chair, Daphne East said: “The Broad Street closure makes little sense, and it is now clear that the medical advice has not called for this road to be closed. Given the main concerns of safe distancing are for indoors rather than outdoors, it appears very odd that one can be seated in a bar or restaurant, but the Minister insists closing Broad Street, as opposed to any other roads, is supporting physical distancing.”
Vice President of the Jersey Chamber of Commerce, John Shenton said: “It has been a long-held political wish of some to have Broad Street pedestrianised. That is a discussion and consultation to be had, but it does appear that the Minister is using COVID-19, to close a particular road, citing ‘health risks’ when no other roads are closed and neither STAC nor the Health Minister have requested it. It does a disservice to the open and transparent decision making we expect of our Government departments.”
Chamber is calling for the road to re-open immediately and for any further decisions to close Broad Street to be the result of a transparent, timely and consultative process involving the businesses and users of this route.