In response to growing numbers of COVID-19 cases, particularly variants of concern, as well as an increase in hospitalizations, B.C.’s Provincial Health Officer (PHO), Doctor Henry, today announced a series of new measures, intended to act as a “circuit breaker”. These measures are set to take effect at midnight on March 29 and will remain in place until April 19, or as otherwise indicated by the PHO.
The measures include the following:
- All food and liquor serving establishments, including restaurants, bars and pubs, must not allow indoor dining or drinking. Dining and drinking on outdoor patios is still allowed, but all existing controls, including physical distancing and table size restrictions, must continue to be followed. People dining on exterior patios should do so with their immediate household or core bubble only. Take-out and delivery options are still permitted.
- Indoor, adult group fitness activities of any kind are temporarily paused. Gyms and fitness centres are restricted to individual or one-on-one activities only i.e. one-on-one personal training.
- In order to address and prevent community spread related to non-essential travel, Whistler Blackcomb ski resort is to close.
The PHO also issued some strong reminders on the following:
- Travel should be limited to essential travel for work or medical reasons only.
- Continue to limit outdoor gatherings to one, consistent group of up to 10 people and remain outside during these interactions.
- All workers are strongly encouraged to continue working from home, where possible.
Once published, the new orders will be available here.
COVID-19 Safety Plans
The PHO once again reminded businesses across B.C. about the importance of having an adequate COVID-19 safety plan, which is reviewed regularly and updated as needed. Doctor Henry reiterated the fact that heightened inspectional and enforcement activities are continuing, the primary objective of which is to support employers in making sure that workplaces are safe and can remain open. However, she went on to say that businesses may be closed down if they are deemed to pose a risk.
In light of the new measures announced today, it may be necessary for you to review and update your existing COVID-19 safety plan, to make sure that these restrictions have been factored in.
go2HR’s COVID-19 Safety Plan Review Service
go2HR’s complimentary COVID-19 safety plan review service helps tourism and hospitality employers review their safety plans. Our team of health and safety experts will review your safety plan and provide recommendations and targeted feedback to help ensure ongoing compliance with the latest requirements. To register for this complimentary safety plan review service, click here.
If you don’t currently have a documented plan, download go2HR’s COVID-19 safety plan template, which includes handy tips, relevant resource links and space to record the specifics of your plan.
If you have any questions regarding workplace health and safety or need support with any aspect of your COVID-19 safety plan, please contact go2HR via phone: 604-633-9787, email: email@example.com or visit our Maintaining Your COVID-19 Safety Plan webpage.