Unsanitary conditions at quarantine facilities reported

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Judge Elyze Iriarte's quarantine hearings will continue on Monday. (PNC file photo)

Sanitary conditions at GovGuam’s quarantine hotel facility was at the center of concerns raised by travelers who arrived on Guam on September 27th.

Attorney John Morrison told Superior Court Judge Elyze Iriarte that the family of four he represents is concerned about the lack of cleanliness maintained in the quarantine rooms. His clients reported that the rooms have not been cleaned, no cleaning supplies are given to the travelers, and their laundry is piling up.

The report of unsanitary conditions is a shared concern among other travelers, according to Morrison.

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On Thursday, Judge Iriarte instructed the Department of Public Health and Social Services to address these concerns outside of the legal arena and today Morrison reported that the family of four was transferred to another room but no cleaning supplies were made available and laundry service still needs to be worked out.

Meanwhile, Public Health’s attorney, James Canto, pointed out that they were not afforded the opportunity to produce a witness who would have testified yesterday that the family was offered a room previously but they denied the offer. Morrison contended that the offer was made at midnight.

Canto also pointed out that there is no petition filed for the family and what was addressed yesterday was not in the scope of the government’s petition to extend the 10-day quarantine. He says the question at hand is whether to extend the 10-day quarantine or release them. But instead, the government was immediately confronted with an evidentiary hearing with no due process.

“No opportunity to present evidentiary witnesses and rulings were made. I’m not sure what is the point of our being here,” Canto said.

Iriarte, in response, reminded Canto, who was not present for yesterday’s proceedings, that no one from the AG’s office raised objections. In fact, additional time was provided that afternoon to remedy the concerns and when the hearings resumed, there were no objections to hearing testimony or any indication that the government wanted to furnish witnesses.

The quarantine hearings will continue on Monday.

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Jolene Toves
Jolene joined the PNC team in 2017, as a producer, co-anchor and investigative reporter covering law enforcement, courts and crimes. Notable coverage includes the Ehlert case, the Mark Torre Jr. trial, the Allan Agababa trial, exclusive pieces on the Life of a Drug Dealer/Addict, and Life behind bars...the story of Honofre Chargualaf and Kevin Cruz. In 2019, she was promoted to Assistant News Director and Lead Anchor. From 2015 to 2017 she served as Public Relations and Promotions Manager, for the Hotel Nikko Guam handling local radio and advertorial promotions, as well as produced and directed tv commercials for the hotel. Prior to this she worked with KUAM for three years as a reporter and segment host. She began her journalism career in 2012, working with Glimpses of Guam contributing to the Guam Business Magazine, R&R magazine, MDM magazine and the Marianas Business Journal.

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