BC health officials order bars, nightclubs to close due to coronavirus

Mar 17 2020, 7:31 pm

BC’s top health officials have a strong message for the province’s bars and nightclubs, ordering them to close in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.

In a press conference Tuesday afternoon, BC’s Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry and Minister of Health Adrian Dix declared a public health emergency and instructed all businesses in the province with primary liquor licences, including bars and nightclubs, to close, “effective immediately,” as they cannot meet social distancing requirements.

As for restaurants and cafes, any establishments that can’t keep within the social distancing guidelines of one to two metres must move to take-out and delivery services.

According to the provincial government, declaring a public health emergency “enables the provincial health officer to facilitate an even faster response to the rapidly changing situation and enact further measures to protect British Columbians.”

A large number of Metro Vancouver eateries and bars have already shuttered their doors in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

On Tuesday morning, Vancouver Coastal Health expanded an initial order from Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart, announcing that all bars and restaurants in the City of Vancouver would be closed for St. Patrick’s Day.

Currently in BC, there are a total of 186 cases of coronavirus, and seven people have died.

With coronavirus on the rise, BC public health authorities are reminding individuals who attend events and large gatherings to monitor their health for signs and symptoms of COVID-19. And if you’re not feeling well, they recommend staying home at this time. Also, due to unexpected cancellations, please check the event you plan to attend is still taking place. Keep up with COVID-19 news here.