The Tourism Industry Association of BC (TIABC), alongside other tourism and hospitality associations, recently met with Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, to discuss the pandemic and to get updates on current and future restrictions and measures.
As outlined by TIABC in their recent newsletter, some of Dr. Henry's key points were:
- Restaurants and pubs were doing well with health and safety measures but some patrons weren’t willing to abide by the rules. After data showed transmission rates with hospitality rising, the province was forced to act with specific orders including the suspension of in-dining services.
- The Province does not support the idea of vaccination passports to allow for border mobility due to equity issues given that some groups or countries are not on a level playing field vis-à-vis immunization.
- Rapid testing would not be used as a bridge to build herd immunity and allow travel to resume again; rapid testing will be used for other purposes.
- There will be no international travel for some time…perhaps fall at the earliest but even that's not a given.
- By end of June, we should have enough vaccine protection for every BC resident so we can resume some of our normal activities.
- By summer, we could be back up to gatherings of 50 people; by fall more than 50.
- By July or August, we should be back up to where we were last summer regarding domestic travel.
Dr. Henry also indicated that restrictions will be in place for several more weeks, which was confirmed in the provincial government's April 19 joint update. Additional restrictions and orders are being put in place in response to increasing COVID-19 transmission rates.
Stay tuned to our COVID-19 Industry page for additional updates and resources as they become available.