Bermuda Red Cross keeps Taxi Drivers Safe as New Airport Opens

Red Cross keeps taxi drivers safe with donation of masks

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The Red Cross donates thousands of masks to the BTOA. Pictures from left Randall Woolridge Acting Director Subcommittee Airport Cecil Lewis Director of Hamilton Subcommittee Dukarai Richardson Burgess Red Cross Intern Corrine Riocca Director of Hotel and Restaurants Subcommittee Diane Gordon Disaster Manager at the Red Cross David Frost President of BTOA and Ann Spencer Arscott (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

Bermuda’s taxi drivers will have a safer Christmas after the Bermuda Red Cross yesterday gave them 5,000 masks to help curb the spread of Covid-19 over the holiday season.

Diane Gordon, disaster manager for the Bermuda Red Cross, said of the donation to the Bermuda Taxi Operators Association: “We are sending a very strong message to those coming to our shores that while we greet them with our usual welcoming arms and appreciate the support they are providing to our economy, we also want to ensure the safety of our island and its people by demanding that guidelines are respected and adhered to throughout their stay.

“Bermuda Red Cross supports the Bermuda Taxi Association and appreciates the risk they put themselves in by providing a frontline service.

“We hope our contribution of masks will ensure that anyone using their service will protect not only themselves but others they come in contact with.”

She added that since March the charity has worked with the Ministry of Health to provide 240,000 masks to frontline workers and essential service workers.

Ms Gordon said: “When the focus turned to the economy, the Bermuda Red Cross took the position that we wanted to support our businesses and economy while still maintaining the safety aspect of a pandemic.”

David Frost, president of the BTOA, said the association was grateful to receive the donation as the masks would not only help protect the drivers, but reduce a potential expense.

Mr Frost said: “We are struggling out there right now. There is not a lot of work so this helps us out quite a bit because the drivers don’t have to buy masks.

“Most of the jobs these days are very small because we don’t have all the hotels, the airport is quiet and there are no cruise ships.”

He said that many taxi drivers have had to manage passengers who did not have masks or did not want to wear them, so the masks were important for the driver’s safety.

Mr Frost added: “The association also appreciates the fine job our drivers do by keeping our resident and tourists safe, by following the Airport Passenger Protocols and the Quarantine Act 2017.”