The Manitoba government is seeking feedback from the public on its proposed plan to ease public health restrictions and continue safely restoring services while ensuring physical distancing, Premier Brian Pallister has announced.
“Thanks to the efforts of ‘Team Manitoba’, we have successfully kept our COVID curve flat and continue to have among the lowest test positivity rates in Canada,” said Pallister. “There is a lot to take into consideration as we reopen our businesses and communities, safely. I am pleased to share with Manitobans the draft plan for Phase Three of Restoring Safe Services, and I encourage their input and advice as we move forward in our recovery efforts, together.”
The draft plan for Phase Three of reopening the Manitoba economy is based on public health advice and consultation with key sectors. Proposed measures include:
• increasing gathering sizes to up to 50 people indoors and 100 people outdoors;
• developing guidelines for faith-based and other cultural gatherings, pow wows and other Indigenous cultural and spiritual gatherings, and small summer fairs and festivals;
• easing border restrictions to allow residents of western Canada and northwest Ontario to enter Manitoba without the need to self-isolate for 14 days;
• resuming regular licensed capacity for child-care centres with guidelines in place;
• increasing group sizes for day camps from 24 children to 50;
• increasing indoor occupancy levels for community/service centres and senior centres/clubs;
• allowing people employed by or affiliated with film production to enter Manitoba without
self-isolating for 14 days;
• allowing people employed by or affiliated with a professional sports team to enter Manitoba without self-isolating for 14 days;
• removing occupancy limits for retail businesses while ensuring physical distancing measures are in place;
• increasing indoor and patio occupancy limits to 75 percent of total capacity for restaurants, bars, beverage rooms, brewpubs, microbreweries and distilleries; and
• lifting occupancy limits for regulated and non-regulated health professions including registered massage therapists.
Detailed information on the plan for Phase Three, including service restoration, measures the public can take to reduce their risk of COVIC-19 exposure or spreading the virus, and workplace guidance for businesses, can be found at www.manitoba.ca/restoringsafeservices.
“As we reopen the economy, we will have to adjust to some level of risk and each person has to decide the level of risk they are willing to accept,” said Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba’s chief provincial public health officer. “All Manitobans, especially those choosing to resume some activities, must remember to practise good hand hygiene, not to share items with others and practise physical distancing when with others outside their households.”
Roussin also noted it is key for people to stay home if they are sick to further reduce the risk of spreading the virus.
The province continues to encourage businesses to take steps to help staff, customers and visitors stay safe including:
• ensuring people are able to reasonably maintain two metres of distance;
• only conducting necessary and brief exchanges within two metres of others;
• applying enhanced cleaning protocols, especially in common areas like washrooms;
• maintaining physical distancing and food-handling protocols in workplace areas including lunch and common areas;
• ensuring staff stay home when feeling sick; and
• following personal risk reduction measures.