BC has extended its province-wide COVID-19 ban on gatherings and events until midnight on February 5, 2021.
The extension was announced by Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry on Thursday afternoon during a live press conference.
The orders, which include a ban on indoor and outdoor private gatherings, community events, travel, and variants of adult sports, first came into effect on November 19, 2020.
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“In the last days we have seen a slight increase in our cases and our curve is trending upward,” she said. “Right now we have to hold the line.”
Henry added that the orders allow essential workplaces, schools, and the healthcare system to “continue to stay open.”
“We know that transmission is less likely to occur in these controlled environments that have many layers of protection in place. It’s what we do outside of these environments and in our homes and workplaces that is a concern,” she said.
Henry also noted that while many people did put aside their holiday plans to follow restrictions and guidelines, the number of cases in every health authority shows that “some people made the decision to make an exception for themselves.”
She furthered that when even a few people make concessions and do not abide by provincial orders, it “exponentially” increases the risk for everyone.
BC reported 761 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday afternoon, bringing the provincially recorded total to 56,015.