The mask mandate and proof of vaccination in BC could see major changes this week.
Sources tell Daily Hive that BC health officials will be holding a COVID-19 briefing on Thursday, and Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has been teasing that we could see major changes prior to spring break, which starts on March 14.
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At the last COVID-19 briefing, Henry stated, “I am very optimistic that we are moving to a better place, rapidly. We’ll have more to say about that very soon.“
If BC announces that it is dropping the mask mandate, it wouldn’t be the first time.
In June 2021, BC said it was dropping the mandate as the province entered Step 3 of its restart plan.
“Mask wearing will be recommended in all indoor public spaces for all people 12 and over who are not yet fully immunized,” Henry explained at a press conference at the time.
BC then switched to a mask recommendation instead, but when cases began to rapidly rise again, health officials reintroduced the mandate in August.
The BC Vaccine Card is a different story. The expiry date on the vaccine card has been extended a few times, and the latest expiration date was set for June 30. However, Henry also suggested they could be looking at scaling back the vaccine card rules, with businesses being able to keep implementing the requirement if they choose to do so.
This will likely be the case for masks as well, in the sense that if businesses choose to implement the mask mandate, they will be able to.
Daily Hive spoke with a Vancouver barbershop owner who fears this implementation, suggesting that the last time it happened, many people were frustrated that they chose to keep the mask mandate in place, while other businesses didn’t.
BC is currently seeing a downward trend when it comes to COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.
The ministry of health hasn’t announced a time for the Thursday conference, but we’ll have all the details as they trickle out.