As of September 21, Cuba reported 6,305 cases of Covid-19 and 127 deaths. The government reacted quickly when the first Covid-19 cases were confirmed on the island in March, banning tourists, conducting widespread testing and contact tracing, and implementing mandatory facemask rules and stringent movement restrictions enforced with steep fines or even jail time. The resulting slump in tourism, plummeting foreign remittances, and acute supply shortages further stressed an already weak economy, jeopardizing some people’s livelihoods and access to medicines and food.
The government closed schools from March to September. Primary and secondary education was provided through televised classes and an online homework correction service that required an email account from the state internet provider. Some classes were provided in sign language for deaf children. Activists and parents complained that classes were often difficult to follow, and that many people were not able to use the homework correction service given the high cost of and limited access to the internet.
In some cases, the government has used Covid-19 related movement restrictions as an excuse to suppress protests. In June, authorities suppressed a demonstration against police violence by harassing, threatening to detain, and detaining dozens of people.
Source : World Report 2021
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