A government review panel in Jersey is calling for the travel traffic light system to be changed to toughen the criteria for a region to be considered green.

The panel which reviews the Government’s border policy during the pandemic says that more measures should be taken before borders reopen.

Under current plans, a region would go green, and only require isolation until a first negative test result if they have fewer than 50 cases per 100,000 people, but a government review panel says it should be 25. This is to further reduce the risk of coronavirus getting into the community when the traffic light system is reintroduced later this month.

The panel is proposing that:

  • Areas should only be classified as green if they have a positive case number of 25 per 100,000 over a 14-day period, compared to 50 cases per 100,000.

  • A return to the identification of regions in the United Kingdom-based upon upper tier local authority (counties, metropolitan districts, inner and outer London and unitary authorities) level, opposed to the lower tier or council areas which will currently be implemented.

Although the Panel agrees in principle with the reopening of the Island’s borders again we are concerned that not doing so in a cautious manner risks a rise of COVID-19 cases given that it coincides with the relaxing of measures both in Jersey and the UK, the continued emergence of variants and the remaining high levels of the virus in other jurisdictions. Although there has been progress globally in combating the Pandemic, particularly with the roll out of vaccination programmes here and abroad, the situation remains uncertain. As such we see these proposals as a sensible enhancement to the policy to meet the Government’s aim of balancing risks.

Deputy Rob Ward, Panel Chair