Well folks, it’s happened! On Tuesday, government officials finally confirmed that BC will move into Step 3 of the Restart Plan this Thursday, July 1st. The next step comes with a whole host of changes, and we’re going to let you know how it will all play out! Let’s see what’s in store.
While BC was one of the few provinces to not move their reopening plan forward, they had good reason to do so. Using a data-driven approach, the province wanted to make sure that things were as safe as possible, considering the next step involves some of the biggest changes to gatherings and public activities we’ve seen in over a year.
The next step of the Restart Plan includes loosened restrictions on a variety of things, from team sports to indoor gatherings and even live events. It’s a real doozy of a list, so we’re going with the official info here:
- Return to usual for indoor and outdoor personal gatherings
- Increased capacity at both indoor (up to 50 people, or 50% capacity if lower) and outdoor organized gatherings (up to 5,000 people, or 50% capacity if lower) when following communicable disease prevention guidance
- Fairs and festivals can operate when following communicable disease prevention guidance
- Canada-wide recreational travel
- No group limit for indoor and outdoor dining
- Liquor service restrictions lifted
- Casinos and nightclubs can operate with a limited capacity
- To operate, businesses must follow communicable disease prevention guidance.
Offices and workplaces
- Continued return to the workplace
- Seminars and bigger meetings allowed
- To operate, workplaces must follow communicable disease prevention guidance.
Sports and exercise
- All indoor fitness classes allowed, usual capacity
- Limited indoor spectators allowed
Alongside these new rules, the province is updating the guidance on mask use. Starting on Thursday, masks will be recommended for those over 12 and are not fully vaccinated. However, the province is lifting Face Coverings Order, which means that you will no longer be required to wear one indoors. Proof of vaccination is not required.
In addition to the updates, Premier John Horgan and official officials stressed a few important things during the press conference. First off, all BC residents who are not fully vaccinated should try and do so as soon as possible. Additionally, they pointed out that due to the ongoing heatwave, residents should check in with anyone they feel might be at risk. Finally, they stressed that residents adhere to the new limits, while respecting the preferences of those who might not be comfortable with such rapid change.
But, all in all, this is an absolutely massive step forward for the province! We can’t wait to showcase all the new events, trips and things to do. For more info on Step 3, head to the BC Government website.