Thursday 26 November, 2020

Portmore call centre closes after worker contracts COVID-19

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iStock

Business Process Outsourcing firm Alorica has suspended operations at its Portmore, St Catherine offices after one employee reported testing positive for COVID-19, the deadly coronavirus which has sent the world into a tizzy.

The company notified staff members of the reported infection and immediate suspension of the Portmore operations on Friday. It said the site will go through a deep cleaning and sanitisation exercise over the weekend, and that the Ministry of Health will inspect the premises on Tuesday.

"Out of an abundance of caution, we are closing down the site temporarily starting this afternoon to implement the full de-contamination," said the company.

According to the company, the worker who tested positive had not been at the Portmore site since Monday, April 6.

"Any employee who was in direct contact with the individual is being informed," the company said.

The Ministry of Health on Friday reported that a 21-year-old female was among two new cases of COVID-19 in Jamaica, bringing the total number of infections in the island to 65. Her mode of transmission is under investigation, the ministry said. The other case involves a 50-year-old female from St James with a travel history from New York.

Alorica, which has five other regional locations, temporarily suspended operations at its Dominican Republic operations last month. The DR has over 2,000 confirmed cases of the virus. 

In addition to its Portmore location in Jamaica, Alorica also operates from a 162,000 square-foot facility at the 58 Half-Way-Tree Tech Park. Current employment figures are unknown, but in 2018 the company said it was aiming to increase its Jamaican workforce to 5,000.

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