VICTORIA, B.C. – The provincial health officer (PHO) has issued guidelines for municipal bylaw officers to support compliance with orders on business closures and gatherings, under the Public Health Act.

According to the government; the new guidelines for municipal bylaw officers and other compliance officers gives explicit instruction on warnings, public education and fines. What can be issued by whom and how to make sure there is compliance with the PHO’s orders for consistently.

Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General shared, local governments are critical partners in ensuring the provincial health officer’s orders are followed so people in communities can stay healthy. Farnsworth shares, it is essential that those responsible for the compliance, have clear and consistent guidelines to enforce the provincial health officer’s orders, for businesses to adapt their workplaces and help keep people safe.

The province says they will redeploy provincial compliance staff from other ministries to support local governments under the direction of the PHO. Staff include liquor and cannabis control and licensing inspectors, gambling enforcement and investigations officers, and community safety personnel.

As outlined in provincial orders last week, bylaw enforcement officers cannot detain an individual, issue a fine or penalty; however, local bylaw and other compliance officers can provide enforcement assistance for the PHO’s orders by:

Compliance officers will provide public health agencies with recommendations and advice on whether further action is necessary. Any enforcement will be at the direction of the PHO or local medical health officer.

To view the PHO’s guidance toward compliance and enforcement, CLICK HERE 

All PHO orders and guidance documents; CLICK HERE