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COVID-19 Weekly Update — May 4

Provincial plans to ease social distancing measures and reopen their economies.

British Columbia | Alberta | Saskatchewan | Manitoba | Ontario | Quebec | Nova Scotia | New Brunswick | Prince Edward Island | Newfoundland and Labrador


British Columbia • B.C.’s Restart Plan

News for employers:

B.C. employers are encouraged to review the B.C. COVID-19 Go-Forward Management Strategy.

Different sectors will be asked to develop plans for how they can meet the expectations of public health officials. WorkSafeBC will work with industry associations to make sure those plans are adequate.

Employers are being asked to forgo in-person meetings, encourage working from home when possible, and when it isn't, to look into setting up staggered shifts. B.C. employers must have clear policies to make sure that anyone who has symptoms of a cold, the flu or COVID-19 does not go into work. Sick day policies have to be developed on the understanding that staff will stay home sick more often and employers need to come up with plans to accommodate seniors and those with existing medical conditions.

Phase 2 • Reopening mid-May:

  • Retail
  • Hair salons, barbers and spas
  • Child care
  • Sports, recreation and camps
  • Museums
  • Libraries
  • Restaurants
  • Pubs
  • Office-based workplaces
  • Expanding public transit services
  • Rebooting parts of the health-care system that have been idle, like dental care, physiotherapy and chiropractic, scheduled surgeries, outpatient services, diagnostic testing and imaging services.
  • Provincial parks will be open for day use as of May 14.

Phase 3 • June to September

If transmission rates remain low or in decline, under enhanced protocols:

  • Hotels and Resorts (June 2020)
  • Parks – broader reopening, including some overnight camping (June 2020)
  • Film industry – beginning with domestic productions (June/July 2020)
  • Select entertainment – movies and symphony, but not large concerts (July 2020)
  • Post-secondary education – with a mix of online and in-class (September 2020)
  • K-12 education – with only a partial return this school year (September 2020)

Phase 4 • To be determined

Nightclubs, bars and casinos are unlikely to reopen any time soon. The ban on gatherings of more than 50 people will remain in place. Conventions, large concerts and live audiences at team sports will not be permitted for some time.

Trips and non-essential travel to other communities should still be avoided.

View B.C.’s Restart Plan here.

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Alberta • Alberta’s Relaunch Strategy

Pre-Opening

Happening now, early actions to allow some activities

Stage 1

As early as May 14. Allows some businesses and facilities to resume full operations. This includes retail businesses including furniture, clothing and book and cafes, restaurants, pubs and bars at 50% capacity.

Stage 2

Start of Stage 2 to be determined. Additional businesses and services to reopen and resume operations. This may include schools, K-12, libraries and personal services.

During Stage 2, remote working is still encouraged.

Stage 3

Timing will be determined based on health indicators. Stage 3 includes fully reopening all businesses and services and recreation activities/centres. Physical distancing measures will still be in place, as well as enhanced protection controls will remain in place.

Review the “Alberta Relaunch Plan” here.

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Saskatchewan • Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan

The following stages of Saskatchewan’s re-opening plan will be implemented via public health orders and the timing will be dictated by evidence of transmission.

Phase One • Starting May 4

Re-opening of previously restricted medical services, opening of golf courses (May 15), parks and campgrounds and low-risk outdoor activity. The easing of restrictions does not apply La Loche or Lloydminster where there are outbreaks of COVID-19.

Phase Two • Starting May 19

Re-opening of retail and select personal care services.

Phase Three • No Dates

Re-opening restaurants (50% capacity) and food services, gyms and fitness centres, licensed establishments and child care facilities; re-opening remaining personal care services, Increasing the size of public and private gatherings to 15 people.

Phase Four • No Dates

Re-opening indoor (bingo halls and casino) and outdoor recreation facilities; increasing the size of public and private gatherings to 30 people.

Phase Five • No Dates

Consider lifting long-term restrictions.

Learn about the Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan can be downloaded here.

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Manitoba • Restoring Safe Services: Manitoba’s Pandemic and Economic Recovery Roadmap

Initial pandemic response

January 17 – May 3

Phase 1, Restoring Services

Phase 1 begins on May 4. Critical public health measures and current travel restrictions will remain.

Retail businesses, including clothing and shoe stores, jewellers, flower shops, sporting good/adventure stores, gift, book and stationery stores, jewelry and accessory stores, toy stores, music, electronic and entertainment stores and similar businesses may reopen if physical distancing/ health measures are followed.

All businesses will be required to limit occupancy to 50 percent of normal business levels. These requirements will be enforceable under public health orders.

Important Information for Stores

  • Staff must use the self-screening tool before coming into work. https://sharedhealthmb.ca/covid19/screening-tool/
  • Employees must stay home when ill and customers are not allowed entry if they are ill with COVID-19 symptoms.
  • Staff are given information about physical distancing. Businesses must post external signs indicating COVID-19 physical distancing protocols, along with floor markings where service is provided or lines form.
  • Entry into the business, including lines, are regulated to prevent congestion.
  • Businesses must maintain a single point of entry.
  • No more than 10 people may gather in common areas. Congregation of people should be actively discouraged.
  • Hand sanitizer is available at entrances and exits for public and staff use.
  • Washrooms have frequent sanitization and a regime for business sanitization is in place.
  • Cashless or no-contact payment should be used to the greatest extent possible.

Phase 2, Restoring Services

Will begin no earlier than June 1.

Critical public health measures and travel restrictions will remain. In this phase, restaurants may offer to eat-in-service at 50% capacity, public gatherings can expand and non-contact children’s sports may be resumed.

Future Phases 

Public health measures may be eased, while physical distancing will remain in place. During this phase, bars, indoor recreation facilities (including gyms), movie theatres, etc. may reopen.

Review Restoring Safe Services: Manitoba’s Pandemic and Economic Recovery Roadmap here.

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Ontario • Reopening Ontario after COVID-19

There will be two-to-four weeks between the launch of each stage to allow health officials to assess conditions before moving to the next one. This will determine if measures should be adjusted, loosened or tightened.

Stage 1

Consideration of:

  • opening select workplaces that can meet current public health guidelines
  • allowing essential gatherings of a limited number of people
  • opening some outdoor spaces
  • continued protections for vulnerable populations

Stage 2

Consideration of:

  • opening more workplaces with significant mitigation plans
  • opening more public spaces
  • allowing some larger public gatherings
  • continued protections for vulnerable populations

Stage 3

Consideration of:

  • opening all workplaces responsibly
  • relaxing restrictions on public gatherings
  • continued protections for vulnerable populations

Review the Reopening Ontario after COVID-19 plan here.

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Quebec • Gradual Resumption of Activities Under the COVID-19 Related Pause

Starting on April 29

Check-points throughout the province will start to be withdrawn starting the end of April and continuing throughout the month of May. 

Since May 4, retail businesses situated outside of the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal (CMM) are open, provided that they have an outdoor entrance.

Activities are resumed to anyone outside of CMM that provides goods or services that supply retail businesses.

Starting on May 11

Retail stores in the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal with direct exterior access that customers usually use can resume their activities. Businesses in the stores’ supply chains can resume their operations on the same date.

Starting on May 11

All construction industry worksites can resume their activities. The reopening covers all sectors of the construction industry: residential, civil engineering and roads, institutional, commercial, and industrial. The reopening will simultaneously lead to the reopening of the industry’s supply chains. Administrative staff in the construction industry must continue to engage in teleworking.

Starting on May 11

Manufacturing companies throughout Québec can resume activities. However, they must limit staff per shift on a given site to a maximum of 50 workers and 50% of the employees exceeding the limit of 50 workers. Some examples:

  • a manufacturing site that employs 60 workers on a shift must operate with a maximum of 55 employees;
  • a manufacturing site that employs 500 workers on a shift must operate with a maximum of 275 employees.

Starting on May 25

Manufacturing companies throughout Québec will be authorized to resume their operations with no restriction on the number of employees that are working. All employees who can engage in teleworking must continue to do so.

Review the Province of Quebec’s Gradual Resumption of Activities Under the COVID-19 Related Pause plan here.

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Nova Scotia 

Ease of Some Restrictions • May 1

The following changes were introduced:

  • Hiking trails and provincial and municipal parks reopened (playground equipment will continue to be off-limits).
  • Garden centres, nurseries and similar businesses can open.
  • Driving ranges can open (golf courses are closed).
  • Sportfishing is permitted and people can attend boating, yacht or sailing clubs for the purpose of preparing boats for use.
  • Use of cottages is permitted (one household per cottage).
  • Campgrounds remain closed
  • Drive-in religious services will also be allowed April 9.

On April 9, the province's chief medical officer said it won't be until at least June before the province can look at lifting restrictions governing life in Nova Scotia.

View Restriction Updates here.

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New Brunswick • Provincial Recovery Framework: COVID-19 Pandemic Plan

Phase 1 • April 24

The following activities will be permitted:

  • Carpooling
  • Two-household bubble (two households can gather)
  • Outdoor Religious Services
  • Outdoor recreation spaces (ball fields including soccer and baseball; and walking trails)
  • Fishing
  • Golf courses, Tennis Courts, Marinas
  • Post-Secondary Education

Phase 2 • 2-4 weeks after April 24

The following activities will be permitted:

  • Elective surgeries and priority health services
  • Daycare, camps and childcare camps
  • Retail facilities
  • Offices / other businesses
  • Restaurants
  • Seasonal campgrounds
  • ATV trails

Phase 3 • 2-4 weeks after Phase 2 if no new wave presents itself

The following activities will be permitted:

  • Hairstylists/barbers
  • Other health services
    • Dental Care
    • Massage
    • Chiropractors
  • Churches
  • Fitness facilities
  • Other close contact business or services

Phase 4 • To Be Determined

  • Gathering Places
  • Organized Sports
  • Bars

View the Provincial Recovery Framework: COVID-19 Pandemic Plan here.

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Prince Edward Island • Renew PEI Together

Phase 1 • May 1

  • Limited outdoor gatherings and non-contact outdoor recreational activities.
  • Re-opening of select outdoor and construction services.
  • Child care services for essential service workers available.
  • Priority non-urgent health care services.

Phase 2 • May 22

Small indoor gatherings of no more than 5 people, larger outdoor gatherings of no more than 10 people and limited recreation activities.

Retail businesses and select indoor services, including:

  • retail outlets - no trying on clothing in stores
  • greenhouses and nurseries
  • remaining construction, maintenance and repair services,
  • cleaning and restoration services
  • extermination and pest control
  • car washes
  • select personal services including hairdressers, barbers, and pet grooming.

All unlicensed child care providers and licensed child care centres can reopen.

Additional health service providers, including registered massage therapists.

Phase 3 • Potential for June 12

Indoor gatherings of no more than 15 people and outdoor gatherings of no more than 20 people. 

Potential to re-introduce organized recreational activities, recreational facilities (ex. gyms and pools), services and public spaces (ex. libraries).

Potential to re-open the following services for PEI residents only:

  • Additional personal services including nail and other salons and tattoo/ piercing studios.
  • Indoor dining at food premises permitted with restrictions.
  • Accommodations including campgrounds, inns, B&Bs, etc.

Continued transition to non-urgent health care services.

Phase 4 • To be determined

Phase 4 involves the transition back to the new normal, including allowing visitors at long-term care facilities, connecting with other provinces and countries and festivals.

Learn more about the Renew PEI Together plan here.

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Newfoundland and Labrador • A Foundation for Living with COVID-19

“A Foundation for Living with COVID-19” includes five alert levels. Based on which alert level the province is in, determined by the Chief Medical Officer of Health, public health restrictions will be gradually relaxed.

The province is currently in Alert Level 5.

Alert Level 5

Gatherings of no more than 5 people.

Health care services:

  • Private health care clinics are closed, except those of physicians and nurse practitioners. Closed clinics can offer urgent and emergent care, and virtual options can be offered for non-urgent care.

Businesses and Services:

  • Retail stores that do not provide services essential to life, health or personal safety of individuals and animals are closed to in-person service, but can offer online/telephone sales with delivery or curbside pick-up options.

Alert Level 4 • May 11

The province will move to Alert Level 4 based on an assessment of factors by the Chief Medical Officer.

Public gatherings will expand to 10.

Businesses and services -- easing of restrictions include:

  • Limited expansion of child care services.
  • Professional services such as accounting firms, law firms, and financial services can offer in-person services. Work from home policies are encouraged, where possible.
  • Gardening centres can open for in-person sales and service.
  • Landscaping and lawn care services can operate.
  • Animal daycares can resume operations.

Recreational Activities:

  • Recreational angling and hunting are permitted.
  • Golf courses can open with restrictions in place.
  • Municipal parks are open.

Health care services:

  • Regional health authorities will begin to allow some health care services to resume.

Alert Level 3

It will take at least 28 days from the start of Alert Level 2 to determine whether or not it is safe to move to Alert Level 3.

Gatherings are expanded to 20 people as long as physical distancing can be maintained.

Recreational Activities:

  • Campsites are permitted to open for day use only, with restrictions on public spaces.
  • Summer day camps can operate, with restrictions.
  • Medium-risk outdoor recreational activities can resume (e.g., team field sports). Spectators must maintain physical distancing.
  • Outdoor pools can operate with a limited number of people.

Health care services:

  • Private health care clinics can reopen in accordance with guidelines.
  • Some health care services to resume.

Businesses and Services

  • Retail stores, including those in shopping malls, can open.
  • Personal service establishments, including spas, esthetic services, hair salons, body piercing, tattooing and tanning salons can reopen.
  • Animal grooming facilities can resume operations.
  • Further expansion of daycare operations.
  • Restaurants can re-open at reduced occupancy.

Alert Level 2

The size of public gatherings will be determined. Places of worship are permitted to resume operations.

Recreational Activities:

  • Gyms and fitness facilities are permitted to open, with restrictions.
  • Arenas can open.
  • Indoor pools can open.
  • Campsites are permitted to offer overnight stays.
  • Playground equipment can be used.

Health care services:

  • Continuing to allow some health care services to resume.
  • All visitor restrictions in health care remain in place.

Businesses and Services:

  • Bars and lounges are permitted to open with reduced occupancy.
  • Indoor entertainment facilities can reopen with reduced occupancy (e.g. bingo halls, cinemas).
  • Re-opening of performance spaces to be determined.

Alert Level 1

Consideration of lifting long-term public health measures will depend on:

  • evaluation of transmission patterns of COVID-19;
  • availability of an effective vaccine and/or treatment; and
  • a strong public health system.

Learn more about each Alert Level here.

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