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Public gathering restrictions remain for Interior Health, despite B.C. health order lift

Local health authority orders trump the province’s change

The province is removing capacity limits requiring vaccine cards starting Oct. 25, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced Tuesday, Oct. 19, but Interior Health may have to wait a bit longer.

Local health authority orders trump the province’s change, meaning the 50 per cent capacity restriction on indoor gatherings for Interior Health, Northern Health and the eastern Fraser Valley remain in place.

For the rest of B.C., Henry said that capacity limits will be raised for indoor ticketed events such as sports, concerts, dance and symphony events, as well as for indoor organized events such as weddings, funeral receptions and organized parties. All of those locations will require attendees to be fully vaccinated as of Oct. 24.

Restaurant patrons and attendees at venues such as restaurants will also now be able to get up and move around, but large groups of people dancing at events such as weddings remain a no-go.

Henry said that pubs and restaurants have said it’s challenging for them to police patrons from moving around, especially with staff already busy enforcing other COVID rules such as masks and vaccine cards.

“We follow the data, we’re hoping to make it a little easier (on restaurants),” she said.

When asked about changes potential changes to the local health order, Interior Health said it expects to provide an update on Friday.


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