With a look at some of the top stories making the news today, August 17 across your Caribbean-American community in South Florida, I’m…for CNW 90.

Today’s newscast is brought to you by the Florida Department of Health;

To help stop the spread of COVID-19, The Florida Department of Health in Broward County reminds everyone to practice social distancing, wash your hands often with soap and water and cover your nose and mouth with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.

Coming up in the newscast, Kamala Harris picks female Caribbean national for chief of staff, Trinidad and Tobago announces schools will be closed until next year and Jamaica to hold political debates later this month.

Now for the news in the detail

Karine Jean-Pierre, a Caribbean national, has been selected to be the chief of staff to Senator Kamala Harris, who recently made history by becoming the first Caribbean-American woman to be nominated as a vice-presidential candidate. Jean-Pierre, who was born in Martinique to Haitian parents, was selected as Harris’ chief-of-staff, becoming the first Black person to serve in that role for a US vice presidential candidate. Jean-Pierre, who was raised in Queens, New York, currently serves as a senior advisor to the Joe Biden 2020 presidential campaign. She is also the Chief Public Affairs Officer for MoveOn.org, an NBC and MSNBC political analyst and previously served as the deputy campaign manager for Martin O’Malley for President. Following the announcement last week Tuesday, Jean-Pierre tweeted that she is proud to be working on the Biden/Harris ticket.

Now for Caribbean News, Trinidad and Tobago has announced that all schools will be closed for the rest of the year as the recent spike in COVID-19 cases has pushed the country in the category of community spread. Over the weekend, Prime Minister Keith Rowley announced several new measures that will begin on Monday for a period of 28 days. As of today, all in-house dining at restaurant and bars, food courts and malls have been suspended with only pick up services. Several closures are now in effect including beaches and rivers, all places of worship, gyms, waterparks, casinos, and cinemas. In addition, there will be no gatherings of more than five people permitted, and weddings and funerals, christenings will only allow for a maximum of 10 people. The wearing of masks in public is also now a must.

On the topic of schools, he announced that all teaching institutions are to remain closed until further notice, likely until December 31. The prime minister said that if these measures do not work, a second national lockdown will be implemented. As of August 16, the twin-island has 519 cases and 11 deaths.

Meanwhile in Jamaica, the two parties contesting the September 3 general elections, the governing Jamaica Labour Party and the main opposition People’s National Party, will go against each other in political debates later this month. The first debate will be held on August 25 with a team debate on social issues. The second debate, on August 27, will be on finance issues and the third and final debate will be between party leaders Prime Minister Andrew Holness and Dr. Peter Phillips on August 29. While they prepare for the debates, the politicians have also began campaigning with the use of local music on social media. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, several politicians have teamed up with popular artistes like Spice, Shenseea and Christopher Martin to create election dubs, enticing residents to vote.

For more information on these and other stories, visit CNWNETWORK.com. Remember to pick up this week’s copy of our Caribbean National Weekly at your nearest Caribbean – American outlet.

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