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B.C. COVID-19 'circuit breaker' restrictions expire Monday, extension expected

Last Updated Apr 19, 2021 at 9:27 am PDT

FILE: Premier John Horgan looks on during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, March 1, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

B.C. Premier John Horgan to attend COVID-19 press conference as 'circuit breaker' restrictions expire

Ban on indoor dining expected to be extended

Daily COVID-19 cases still high with record number of people in hospital

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – B.C.’s “circuit breaker” COVID-19 restrictions are set to expire Monday, but a ban on indoor dining could last up to May long weekend.

Premier John Horgan will join Health Minister Adrian Dix and Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry at Monday’s COVID-19 update press conference at 2 p.m. He’s expected to focus on what comes next as daily case numbers remain high and variant cases continue to spike.

On Friday, B.C. recorded 1,005 new COVID-19 cases and six deaths, and there were a record number of people in hospital.

Horgan met with his cabinet last week, where it was largely suspected he was discussing the feasibility of a travel ban. However, Horgan had previously noted such a ban may not be possible.

The B.C. Restaurant and Foodservices Association said last week industry stakeholders met with Dr. Bonnie Henry, when it says she confirmed the restrictions will be extended.

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On March 29, the province gave restaurants less than a day’s notice before implementing indoor restrictions. The rules also paused all indoor adult group fitness activities and closed Whistler Blackcomb.

Ten days ago, Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon announced $50 million for one-time relief grants for 14,000 businesses affected by the rules.

Vancouver Coastal and Fraser health regions say 38 businesses were ordered to close due to workplace transmission of COVID-19 last week.

A new Provincial Health Order came into effect April 12 allowing public health to order a business to shutter if three or more employees test positive, and it is determined there was transmission at work. The closure lasts at least 10 days.