Following the May long weekend, the B.C. Government has finally announced a reopening plan for businesses in B.C.
The latest set of restrictions were set in March, due to record high cases across the province. Although originally only set till April 19th, it was extended until after the Victoria Day Long weekend.
Taking place a week prior to the Easter Long weekend gatherings, these restrictions were initially received poorly by the restaurant industry in particular. Many protested that not enough warning was provided, causing to a lost in business and wasted inventory.
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BC Business Reopening Plan
The Government has announced a 4 Step reopening plan to help return spaces to normal by the fall. The first step starts immediately, and the fourth step starts in September.
Moving to the next step of the plan will be based on percentage of the population vaccinated along with declining case counts and OVID-19 hospitalizations.
Step 1: Starting May 25
- Indoor and outdoor dining for groups up to 6 people (not restricted to your household or bubble)
- Liquor served until 10 pm
Step 2: Earliest start date June 15
- Liquor served until midnight
- Banquet halls can operate with limited capacity and a COVID-19 Safety Plan
- Consultation with sector associations begins for next steps on easing restrictions.
Step 3: Earliest start date July 1
- Liquor service restrictions lifted
- No group limit for indoor and outdoor dining
- Bingo halls, casinos and nightclubs can operate with a limited capacity
- Businesses must operate based on a new sector COVID-19 Safety Plan.
Step 4: Earliest start date September 7
- Businesses will continue to operate based on the new COVID-19 safety guidelines and their updated COVID-19 Safety Plan
The Province hopes that with the increase in vaccination, cases will be low enough for us to return to normal social activities before the end of the year.
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