Maintaining Essential Services
On March 26, the Ministry of Public Safety outlined several measures under the Emergency Program Act to ensure a coordinated response to preserve essential goods and services across all levels of government for the duration of the provincial emergency. Of relevance:
- Essential services during the COVID-19 emergency are “services British Columbians rely on in their daily lives in the context of COVID-19 response and recovery.”
- Any business or service that has not been ordered to close (see active orders from the Provincial Health Office), and is also not identified on the essential service list, may stay open if it can adapt its services and workplace to the orders and recommendations of the PHO.
City of Vancouver Orders
Refer to the City of Vancouver’s COVID-19 resource page for up-to-date information on public health measures, orders and resources. Key orders to note:
- Mayor Stewart and City Council have ordered all restaurants in Vancouver to close table service, and pivot to offering takeout and delivery options.
- Establishments violating this order may be subject to fines and penalties of up to $50,000. People and businesses violating orders under the State of Emergency Bylaw can face fines of up to $50,000.
Public Health Information on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)
COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool and App
The Province of British Columbia has launched a BC COVID-19 Symptom Self Assessment Tool designed to help residents determine whether they require further assessment or testing for COVID-19.
Launch the Assessment Tool
The Province has also released a mobile app that will let you receive the latest updates, trusted resources, and alerts. There is also a web version of the app.
Latest information and general health authority resources on the novel coronavirus may be found here:
- Vancouver: Vancouver Coastal Health
- British Columbia: BC Centre for Disease Control
- Canada: Public Health Agency of Canada
- Global: World Health Organization
Please note BC health officials have daily public COVID-19 briefings at 3PM PST that you may stream through your news channel of choice. Noon and 6PM are also good times to catch up on the day’s news.
Public Health Measures and Orders in Effect
British Columbia’s Office of the Provincial Health Officer (PHO) has ordered the following measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, and to protect us and all our loved ones:
- No mass gatherings of more than 50 people are permitted
- Individuals in workplaces – including clients and customers – must establish and maintain a distance of at least two metres from one another
- All personal service establishments – including but not limited to spas, massage services, aestheticians, barbers, and hair stylists and tattoo parlours – shall be closed
- All Liquor Primary establishments, including bars and clubs, must be closed
Please note this is not an exhaustive list of active orders. Please refer to the Office of the Provincial Health Officer’s dedicated page on COVID-19 for more details on specific orders, and for resources and guidance on protecting workplaces and the public.