The Ministry of Health and Wellness is advising business owners in the food industry and also members of the general public to be on the alert for persons purporting to be public health inspectors.
This follows two separate incidents where individuals have purported to be public health inspectors at food establishments.
“The most recent incident was at the reopening of Crab Circle, where persons purporting to be from the Kingston and St Andrew Health Department visited Crab Circle, used the opportunity during the opening ceremony to deceive KSAMC [Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Cooperation] officials, freely interacted with the public, vendors and participated in interviews with the media during and after the event,” the health ministry said in a statement.
The individuals were also reportedly featured on social media visiting the Island Grill store in Ocho Rios, St Ann on November 13, where they reportedly carried an out illegal assessment and then demanded food for payment.
The Ministry of Health and Wellness is cautioning the imposters to desist from this practice, which may result in a fine of up to J$250,000 for the first offence and J$500,000 for the second offence under the Professions Supplementary to Medicine Act.
It also sought to remind business owners and other members of the public that public health inspectors employed by the Government are clad in dark brown pants/skirts, beige shirt/blouse and should present an identification card issued by the respective parish health department.
Persons who may be in doubt can also contact the health department to confirm the identity of the officer before engaging the individual.