The Malta Independent 21 September 2021, Tuesday

MUMN protests against ‘punishment’ mandatory hotel quarantine

Tuesday, 14 September 2021, 10:23 Last update: about 6 days ago

The Malta Union of Midwives & Nurses is protesting against the mandatory hotel quarantine period imposed upon people entering the country from dark red zones, saying that the measures is nothing more than a “punishment.” 

The MUMN specified that they were protesting against the approach to impose a hotel quarantine period on Maltese residents. 

As things stand, people entering Malta from a list of so-called ‘dark red’ countries must spend a period of 14 days in quarantine – regardless of whether they are vaccinated or not – at a hotel, which comes at a cost of €100 per day. 

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“It is clearly evident that this is not a Covid measure but a punishment for going abroad to a red zone country,” the MUMN said. 

They said that such measures are unacceptable since they constrain one’s life, and also because travel is not always done for pleasure – and also mentioned that persons with special needs were not exempted from such “punishment, which shows how insensitive the authorities have become.” 

“What is even worse is that, although the person has to pay €100 daily, the service in these hotels is far from acceptable,” the MUMN added. 

The union said that it had to intervene when a nurse was locked in one of these hotel rooms for two weeks with his wife and small daughter, without internet and without food. 

“A simple request to warm some milk for his daughter bought by him took two hours,” the union said. 

“These measures are a shame on this country and the MUMN supports its members and their families and appeals to the Prime Minister to change this legal notice so to allow all those who have a residence [in Malta] to quarantine at home,” the union added. 

MUMN said that it is also informed that nursing agencies which bring nurses from abroad to work in Malta are finding great difficulties in doing so because of this “useless measure.” 

The union said that Covid-19 measures should have never been used as a punishment, and that Public Health Superintendent Charmaine Gauci should not have allowed certain hotel establishments to make money on the back of these measures out of people who were constrained to travel. 

It is clear that Public Health went overboard, causing unnecessary human suffering as a form of punishment which is definitely not acceptable in today’s world. Prime Minister in the name of the Public, please stop this useless human suffering,” the MUMN appealed.

Their statement came after pressure on authorities on the measure increased, first through an appeal by the mother of a girl who has down syndrome who asked for her daughter to be exempted from hotel quarantine in favour of doing her period of quarantine at home, and then after three people took to Malta's law courts to challenge the measure.

 

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