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What is B.C.’s Restart Plan? What are the current province-wide restrictions?

Category
Updated
27, 05-2021

BC's Restart is a careful, four-step plan to bring British Columbians back together. Beginning on May 25, British Columbians can gradually begin to restart important social connections, businesses and activities. Getting vaccinated is the most important tool supporting the restart.

 

Below is a breakdown of the four steps.


 

 

Step 1: Starting May 25

Step 2: Earliest date is June 15

Step 3: Earliest date is July 1

Step 4: Earliest date is Sept 7

Criteria

At least 60% of the 18+ population vaccinated with dose 1, along with stable case counts and COVID-19 hospitalizations.

At least 65% of the 18+ population vaccinated with dose 1, along with declining case counts and COVID-19 hospitalizations.

At least 70% of the 18+ population vaccinated with dose 1, along with low case counts and declining COVID-19 hospitalizations.

More than 70% of the 18+ population vaccinated with dose 1, along with low case counts and low COVID-19 hospitalizations.

PHO Guidelines

Physical distancing and masks continue to be required in public indoor settings. If you or anyone in your family feels sick, stay home and get tested immediately.

Physical distancing and masks continue to be required in public indoor settings. If you or anyone in your family feels sick, stay home and get tested immediately.

Masks are recommended in public indoor settings. Engage in careful social contact. If you or anyone in your family feels sick, stay home and get tested immediately.

Masks in public indoor settings are a personal choice. Normal social contact. If you or anyone in your family feels sick, stay home and get tested immediately.

Personal Gatherings

Outdoor personal gatherings of up to 10 people. Indoor personal gatherings up to 5 people or 1 other household.

Outdoor personal gatherings up to 50 people (birthday parties, backyard BBQs, block parties), Playdates.

Return to usual for indoor and outdoor personal gatherings. Sleepovers.

Return to normal personal gatherings and social contact.

Organized Gatherings

Outdoor seated organized gatherings of up to 50 people with a COVID-19 Safety Plan. Indoor seated organized gatherings of up to 10 people with a COVID-19 Safety Plan. Work with faith-based leaders to bring back in-person worship services.

Indoor seated organized gatherings of up to 50 people with a COVID-19 Safety Plan.

Increased capacity at both indoor and outdoor organized gatherings with a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place. Fairs and festivals can operate with a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place.

Increased capacity at large organized gatherings, like a concert.

Travel

Recreational travel within your travel region is allowed. Non-essential travel between travel regions continues to be restricted.

Provincial travel restrictions lifted. Recreational travel within B.C. allowed. BC Transit and BC Ferries offer increased service as needed.

Canada-wide recreational travel.

Canada-wide recreational travel.

Businesses

Indoor and outdoor dining for groups up to 6 people (not restricted to your household or bubble). Liquor served until 10 pm.

Liquor served until midnight. Banquet halls can operate with limited capacity and a COVID-19 Safety Plan.

No group limit for indoor and outdoor dining. Liquor service restrictions lifted. Bingo halls, casinos and nightclubs can operate with a limited capacity.

Businesses will continue to operate based on the new COVID-19 safety guidelines and their updated COVID-19 Safety Plan.

Offices and Workplaces

Start a gradual return to workplaces. Employers must continue to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan and daily health check in place.

Continued return to the workplace. Small, in-person meetings allowed.

Continued return to the workplace. Seminars and bigger meetings allowed.

Workplaces fully reopened.

Sports and exercise

Indoor low intensity group exercise allowed with limited capacity. Outdoor games and practices for both adults and youth group/team sports allowed. No spectators at any indoor or outdoor sport activities.

Indoor high intensity group exercise allowed with reduced capacity. Indoor games and practices for both adults and youth group/team sports allowed. No spectators at any indoor sport activities. Outdoor spectators up to 50 allowed.

All indoor fitness classes allowed, usual capacity. Limited indoor spectators allowed.

Return to normal sport competitions with an updated COVID-19 Safety Plan in place. Increased outdoor and indoor spectators.


 

There are four essential components that the government will monitor when deciding whether to move forward in the four step plan:

  • Declining COVID-19 case counts
  • Increasing vaccination rate in people 18+
  • Declining COVID-19 hospitalizations, including critical care
  • Declining COVID-19 mortality rate

To learn more, see the full B.C. Restart Plan.

For a detailed list of current province-wide restrictions and orders, see the Province-wide restrictions.

What is B.C.’s Restart Plan? What are the current province-wide restrictions?

Date:
May 27, 2021

BC's Restart is a careful, four-step plan to bring British Columbians back together. Beginning on May 25, British Columbians can gradually begin to restart important social connections, businesses and activities. Getting vaccinated is the most important tool supporting the restart.

 

Below is a breakdown of the four steps.


 

 

Step 1: Starting May 25

Step 2: Earliest date is June 15

Step 3: Earliest date is July 1

Step 4: Earliest date is Sept 7

Criteria

At least 60% of the 18+ population vaccinated with dose 1, along with stable case counts and COVID-19 hospitalizations.

At least 65% of the 18+ population vaccinated with dose 1, along with declining case counts and COVID-19 hospitalizations.

At least 70% of the 18+ population vaccinated with dose 1, along with low case counts and declining COVID-19 hospitalizations.

More than 70% of the 18+ population vaccinated with dose 1, along with low case counts and low COVID-19 hospitalizations.

PHO Guidelines

Physical distancing and masks continue to be required in public indoor settings. If you or anyone in your family feels sick, stay home and get tested immediately.

Physical distancing and masks continue to be required in public indoor settings. If you or anyone in your family feels sick, stay home and get tested immediately.

Masks are recommended in public indoor settings. Engage in careful social contact. If you or anyone in your family feels sick, stay home and get tested immediately.

Masks in public indoor settings are a personal choice. Normal social contact. If you or anyone in your family feels sick, stay home and get tested immediately.

Personal Gatherings

Outdoor personal gatherings of up to 10 people. Indoor personal gatherings up to 5 people or 1 other household.

Outdoor personal gatherings up to 50 people (birthday parties, backyard BBQs, block parties), Playdates.

Return to usual for indoor and outdoor personal gatherings. Sleepovers.

Return to normal personal gatherings and social contact.

Organized Gatherings

Outdoor seated organized gatherings of up to 50 people with a COVID-19 Safety Plan. Indoor seated organized gatherings of up to 10 people with a COVID-19 Safety Plan. Work with faith-based leaders to bring back in-person worship services.

Indoor seated organized gatherings of up to 50 people with a COVID-19 Safety Plan.

Increased capacity at both indoor and outdoor organized gatherings with a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place. Fairs and festivals can operate with a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place.

Increased capacity at large organized gatherings, like a concert.

Travel

Recreational travel within your travel region is allowed. Non-essential travel between travel regions continues to be restricted.

Provincial travel restrictions lifted. Recreational travel within B.C. allowed. BC Transit and BC Ferries offer increased service as needed.

Canada-wide recreational travel.

Canada-wide recreational travel.

Businesses

Indoor and outdoor dining for groups up to 6 people (not restricted to your household or bubble). Liquor served until 10 pm.

Liquor served until midnight. Banquet halls can operate with limited capacity and a COVID-19 Safety Plan.

No group limit for indoor and outdoor dining. Liquor service restrictions lifted. Bingo halls, casinos and nightclubs can operate with a limited capacity.

Businesses will continue to operate based on the new COVID-19 safety guidelines and their updated COVID-19 Safety Plan.

Offices and Workplaces

Start a gradual return to workplaces. Employers must continue to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan and daily health check in place.

Continued return to the workplace. Small, in-person meetings allowed.

Continued return to the workplace. Seminars and bigger meetings allowed.

Workplaces fully reopened.

Sports and exercise

Indoor low intensity group exercise allowed with limited capacity. Outdoor games and practices for both adults and youth group/team sports allowed. No spectators at any indoor or outdoor sport activities.

Indoor high intensity group exercise allowed with reduced capacity. Indoor games and practices for both adults and youth group/team sports allowed. No spectators at any indoor sport activities. Outdoor spectators up to 50 allowed.

All indoor fitness classes allowed, usual capacity. Limited indoor spectators allowed.

Return to normal sport competitions with an updated COVID-19 Safety Plan in place. Increased outdoor and indoor spectators.


 

There are four essential components that the government will monitor when deciding whether to move forward in the four step plan:

  • Declining COVID-19 case counts
  • Increasing vaccination rate in people 18+
  • Declining COVID-19 hospitalizations, including critical care
  • Declining COVID-19 mortality rate

To learn more, see the full B.C. Restart Plan.

For a detailed list of current province-wide restrictions and orders, see the Province-wide restrictions.

Source:

Can you tell me about the new travel restrictions in B.C.?

Date:
May 27, 2021

There is a new order under the Emergency Program Act banning non-essential travel between “travel regions'' in B.C. The order is to try and limit the spread of COVID-19. The target of the order is recreational travel and those found violating the order may receive a fine of $575. The order is in place until June 15, 2021. 

BC has been divided into 3 travel regions. Non-essential travel for recreation, visiting friends or family for social reasons, and vacations is not allowed by law between these regions. 

The regions are: 

  • The Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley
  • Vancouver Island
  • Northern and Interior


There are exceptions so be sure to review the order. Read more about the travel restrictions and the order here.

Source:

Is the new COVID-19 vaccine safe? When will I get vaccinated?

Date:
April 28, 2021

Four vaccines have been approved by Health Canada. They are the Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca/SII COVISHIELD (AZ/SII) and Johnson & Johnson vaccines. 

The vaccines are free for all British Columbians. Below is a breakdown of the four vaccination phases, as set out in the  BC COVID-19 Immunization Plan.

All British Columbians that are 12+ can now register to get vaccinated. B.C. is currently in Phase 4 of the BC COVID-19 Immunization Plan.

Phase

Timeline

Priority Groups

Phase 1

Dec 2020 - Feb 2021

  • Residents and staff of long-term care facilities
  • Individuals assessed for and awaiting long-term care
  • Residents and staff of assisted living residences
  • Essential visitors to long-term care facilities and assisted living residences
  • Hospital health care workers who may provide care for COVID-19 patients in settings like Intensive Care Units, emergency departments, paramedics, medical units and surgical units
  • Remote and isolated Indigenous communities

Phase 2

Feb 2021 - April 2021

  • Hospital staff, community general practitioners (GPs) and medical specialists not immunized in Phase 1
  • Vulnerable populations living and working in select congregated settings
  • Staff in community home support and nursing services
  • Seniors born in 1941 or earlier not immunized in Phase 1
  • Indigenous (First Nations, Métis and Inuit) peoples born in 1956 or earlier, Elders and additional Indigenous communities not immunized in Phase 1

Phase 3

April 2021 - May 2021

  • People aged 79 to 60, in five year increments:
    • 79 to 75 (D1 April)
    • 74 to 70 (D1 April)
    • 69 to 65 (D1 April)
    • 64 to 60 (D1 April/May)
  • Indigenous (First Nations, Métis and Inuit) peoples aged 64 to 18 (D1 April)
  • People aged 74 to 16 who are clinically extremely vulnerable (D1 March/April)

Phase 4

May 2021 - June 2021

People aged 59 to 18, in five year increments:

  • 59 to 55 (D1 May)
  • 54 to 50 (D1 May)
  • 49 to 45 (D1 May)
  • 44 to 40 (D1 May/June)
  • 39 to 35 (D1 May/June)
  • 34 to 30 (D1 June)
  • 29 to 25 (D1 June)
  • 24 to 18 (D1 June)

Second doses will be administered approximately 16 weeks after dose one.

For all your COVID-19 immunization questions, see Immunize BC’s Q&A page.

Reminder: Provincial Health Officer (PHO) orders and guidelines remain in place for everyone, regardless if they have received the vaccine. 

For more information, see the Government of BC COVID-19 Vaccines page, and BCCDC’s Plan for Vaccine Distribution in BC.

Source:

Do I have to wear a mask?

Date:
May 27, 2021

Masks are now required for everyone in all public indoor settings and workplaces. People who cannot put on or remove a mask on their own are exempt. 

  • Employers are expected to enforce the mandatory mask policy with both employees and customers
  • A customer can be refused entry or service if they do not wear a mask

Masks are required in all indoor public places and all retail stores. This includes:

  • Malls, shopping centres
  • Grocery stores
  • Coffee shops
  • Common areas in hotels
  • Libraries
  • Clothing stores
  • Liquor stores
  • Drug stores
  • Community centres
  • Recreation centres
  • City Halls
  • Restaurants and bars when not seated at a table

Masks are required in all workplaces for shared work areas and areas where physical distancing cannot be maintained. This includes:

  • Elevators
  • Kitchens
  • Hallways
  • Customer counters
  • Break rooms

You are subject to a $230 fine if you:

  • Do not wear a mask in an indoor public setting, unless you are exempt
  • Refuse to comply with the direction of an enforcement officer, including the direction to leave the space
  • Engage in abusive or belligerent behaviour

For more information, see the order on province-wide restrictions in effect from November 19, 2020 at midnight
until further notice.

 

Source:

Can I still wash my hands if my BC community has a boil water advisory?

Date:
May 27, 2021

According to the First Nations Health Authority (FNHA), if you are under a Boil Water or Do Not Consume Advisory, it is still safe to wash your hands with soap and water.

See the FNHA COVID-19 website for more information on staying healthy during the health crisis. However, if you are living with a Do Not Use (DNU) advisory you should wash with bottled water. For specific water advisories and more information see HERE.

Source:

My kids are online much more than usual due to COVID-19 Coronavirus. What can I do to ensure they are safe?

Date:
May 27, 2021

As COVID-19 continues to keep kids cooped up indoors, Global News reports that “there’s been a rise in the online sexual exploitation of Canadian children,” according to a national tipline. Cybertip.ca says it saw a 66 percent spike in reports in April compared to the three previous months. The tipline processes reports from the public about potentially illegal material, including child pornography or online luring, and aims to act as a “triage” for law enforcement and child welfare. Moreover, there’s a new type of predator to worry about and they call themselves “cappers.” They trick children into committing illicit acts over livestream while secretly recording a video, which they then use to blackmail the child.

Parents can go to Cybertips.ca for their guide on Keeping Kids Safe Online While Out of School which includes advice on what parents should be aware of and what parents can do to keep their children safe online. The Government of Canada also has resources to protect your entire family online.

Source:

I want to do more. How can I help respond to COVID-19 Coronavirus?

Date:
May 27, 2021

If you are interested to support the response to Coronavirus COVID-19, there are many ways you can help. Information below is provided by the Government of Canada. It lists concrete, meaningful ways to contribute and make a real difference in the lives of fellow Canadians.

FluWatchers

FluWatchers is an online surveillance system that normally helps track the spread of flu-like illness across Canada. We are using its established network of volunteers to track COVID-19 Coronavirus. You can participate by anonymously answering 2 quick health-related questions each week to help show Canadians where COVID-19 is circulating.

Sign up to be a FluWatcher

Download Canada COVID-19 App

The app will support you to track your symptoms, receive the latest updates, and access trusted resources. 

Download the application

Supplies to help Canada respond

Can your business supply products and services to help Canada's response to COVID-19 Coronavirus? We want to hear from you.

Supply a needed product or service

Volunteer for the Safe Seniors, Strong Communities Program

Safe Seniors, Strong Communities Program is a provincial initiative to help seniors stay safe while ensuring their basic needs are met. The program matches seniors who need support with non-medical essentials, to volunteers in their community who are willing to help. When you register as a volunteer, your contact information is shared with the United Way's Better at Home agencies. Those agencies make the connections between seniors and volunteers in the community.

Sign up to volunteer

Source:

Are parks in BC closed due to COVID-19?

Date:
May 27, 2021

For the most up to date information, visit Recreation Sites and Trails BC. Click HERE for a list of parks that are open to visitors. On April 23, 2021, BC Parks provided an update regarding the upcoming season and COVID-19 protocols. To be compliant with this new order, they ask all visitors who have made camping reservations up to May 25, 2021, for parks that are outside of your local Health Authority Region (or combined region, as defined by the order) to cancel your booking. See HERE for more information and to cancel your booking.

Booking for BC residents for the 2021 season is now open. Click HERE to make your reservation. For more information regarding the specific operating dates for your preferred park please visit the individual park webpages.

Many municipal parks, beaches and gardens remain open. Certain parks have reduced services, including facility closures and parking limitations. Some public playgrounds and schoolyards remain closed. Check with your local municipality regarding parks near you. 

While enjoying a park, beach or garden, maintain social distancing of 2 metres. See: Can I get in legal trouble if I don’t practice “social distancing?”.

Source:

Where can I find information about COVID-19 Coronavirus in my own language?

Date:
May 27, 2021

The Federal Government has created COVID 19: Indigenous awareness resources which contains information and resources in Indigenous languages.

The Provincial Government has translated its COVID-19 Coronavirus content into 

If you are unable to open the links, check back later. They are likely being updated.

The BC Centre of Disease Control has also provided translated handouts and videos in multiple languages HERE.

The City of Vancouver has made their COVID-19 resource available in multiple languages including Korean, Tagalog, Chinese (traditional and simplified), and Farsi among others. Find Vancouver resources in your language HERE.

Source:

I am about to travel back to BC from another country. What COVID-19 rules are in place for travellers?

Date:
May 27, 2021

Canadians are strongly recommended to cancel or postpone all international travel.

Effective January 7, 2021, at 12:01 am EST, all air passengers five years of age or older will be required to test negative for COVID-19 before travelling from another country to Canada. Documentation of a negative laboratory test result must be presented to the airline prior to boarding a flight to Canada. The test must be performed using a COVID-19 molecular polymerase chain reaction (or PCR) test and must be taken within 72 hours prior to the traveller’s scheduled departure to Canada.

As of February 21, 2021, at 11:59 pm ET, travellers, unless exempt, will also be required to:

  • take a COVID-19 molecular test on arrival in Canada
  • stay in a hotel for 3 nights while they await the results of the COVID-19 molecular test they received on arrival
  • pay for their hotel, as well as all associated costs for food, cleaning and security

All hotels will be located near one of the 4 Canadian airports currently accepting international flights:

  1. Vancouver International Airport
  2. Calgary International Airport
  3. Toronto Pearson International Airport
  4. Montreal-Trudeau International Airport

Anyone who receives a negative test result and is authorized to enter Canada must still complete the full, mandatory 14-day quarantine.

Travellers arriving to Canada by land or water, as of February 15, 2021, with some exceptions, will be required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 molecular test result taken in the United States within 72 hours of pre-arrival, or a positive test taken 14 to 90 days prior to arrival. In addition, as of February 22, 2021, travellers entering Canada at the land border will be required to take a COVID-19 molecular test on arrival as well as toward the end of their 14-day quarantine.

See HERE for a full list of restrictions and requirements when returning to Canada.

The Government of Canada will be further increasing surveillance efforts to ensure travellers entering Canada complete the applicable mandatory 14-day quarantine period under the Quarantine Act. Travellers to Canada must use the ArriveCAN App or website and provide accurate contact information and their mandatory 14-day quarantine plan on or before entry.

Violating any instructions provided when you enter Canada is an offence under the Quarantine Act and could lead to up to six months in prison and/or $750,000 in fines.

On February 24, 2021 BC updated the procedures in place for travellers returning from other countries. Go to Self-Isolation on Return to BC for full details.

 

Self-Isolation Plans

All international travellers returning to B.C., whether by land or air, are required by law to self-isolate for 14 days, submit a self-isolation plan and complete the federal CANArrive application.

Self-isolation plans must be reviewed by provincial government officials before travellers can return home.

You can submit your self-isolation plan and CANArrive application online before you begin your travel back to Canada or upon arrival. Go HERE for instructions on how to fill out your self-isolation plan and federal arrival application.

 

Current Quarantine Orders

On March 17, 2020, the Provincial Health Officer (PHO) issued a quarantine order directing people returning to B.C. from the U.S. and other international destinations to self-isolate.

On March 25, 2020, the federal government implemented a self-isolation plan for returning international travellers on select flights under the Quarantine Act.

  • The federal government will continue to use its authority under the Quarantine Act to ensure compliance with the order to self-isolate, enforceable by RCMP or local police
  • Maximum penalties for breaking self-isolation orders include a fine of up to $750,000 and/or imprisonment for six months
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