“In Florida we have everything up and running except the cruise lines because the federal government will not allow them (…) to sail,” DeSantis reproached.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis asked the United States Government on Friday to allow the cruise industry, which has been inactive since the COVID-19 pandemic, to resume its activities to cause a “domino effect” in the economy state.
“We need the cruise lines to operate again,” DeSantis said during a round table in Port Canaveral, where the state attorney general, Ashley Moody, as well as executives from this tourism industry met.
“In Florida we have everything up and running except the cruise lines because the federal government will not allow them to sail,” DeSantis reproached.
An order from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which prohibits cruise ships from embarking and disembarking passengers across the country, has been extended until Nov. 1.
“Cruise operators will not begin or continue operations … except as approved by the USCG (US Coast Guard), in consultation with HHS / CDC staff, until further notice,” the order states.
As stated by the governor, “Jobs are very, very important. And they are not just for people who work on cruise ships. This has a ripple effect on all kinds of small businesses, family operations, that provide services to the cruise industry. “, he pointed.
Prosecutor Moody supported the Republican Governor by stating that this economic activity, which, between March and September 2020 has had worldwide losses of $ 77,000 million, means “a great weight for almost all the travel industries of the United States” .
“However,” the attorney added, “(President Joe) Biden’s administration keeps our cruise ships docked, while many other major countries begin operating cruise ships safely under health guidelines.”
“The rationale for keeping US cruise ships closed for the foreseeable future is based on outdated data and guidelines in place before we had a COVID-19 vaccine,” Moody added.
Royal Caribbean ships are scheduled to sail from the Caribbean
Apart from the CDC order, several cruise lines such as Royal Caribbean, based in Miami, announced that they will resume their trips from ports in other countries such as the Bahamas and Bermuda, with restrictions and measures such as that all passengers over 18 years of age they must be vaccinated before boarding.
Two ships of the US cruise companies Royal Caribbean and Celebrity will be the first to return to the Caribbean starting next June after a long paralysis of the industry since March 2020, due to the pandemic, and they will do so with vaccinated adult passengers and crew, announced the company last week.
In its most recent report, the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), which represents 95% of ocean cruise companies, calls the losses from the coronavirus “devastating”.
CLIA estimates that each day that cruise ships are not operating means 2,500 fewer jobs.
Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Cava Levine, who long ago made the same request as DeSantis, estimates that in her county, cruises represent an economic activity of about $ 7,000 million a year and 40,000 jobs depend on them, in addition to serving as support to other sectors of the economy.