VICTORIA, B.C. – B.C. is moving forward with a proof of vaccination program on September 13th.
Premier John Horgan, Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry spoke at a conference Monday to announce the BC Vaccine passport.
“Vaccines are our ticket to putting this pandemic behind us,” said Premier John Horgan. “So I call on all eligible unvaccinated British Columbians to roll up their sleeves to stop the spread, and help protect themselves, their loved ones and the people in their community. British Columbia has one of the strongest vaccination rates in Canada with 75% of eligible people now fully vaccinated, but there is still more work to do.”
The new order will require individuals to give proof of vaccination to access social, recreational and discretionary events and businesses in British Columbia.
Individuals visiting from outside British Columbia will be required to provide an official record of vaccination alongside a valid government ID. For visitors from outside Canada, they will need to show their proof of vaccination used to enter the country as well as their passport.
On September 13th, one vaccine dose is required for entry into these settings, and by October 24th, people will need to be fully vaccinated at least seven days after both doses to access indoor ticketed sporting events, indoor and outdoor patio dining in restaurants, fitness centres and casinos.
The measures will be time-limited through to January 31st, 2022, subject to possible extension.
“I am grateful to every single person who has taken the time to receive their COVID-19 vaccine,” said Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s provincial health officer. “While our vaccination rate continues to rise, we are still seeing waves of transmission primarily amongst those who are not fully vaccinated. These new measures will help reduce transmission and keep our communities safe and ensure we can continue to keep businesses open and safely enjoy much-needed social events.”
People will be able to confidentially access their proof of vaccination through a secure weblink, which will be released before September 13th.
“Getting vaccinated keeps everyone in B.C. safe and stops the spread of COVID-19,” said Adrian Dix, Minister of Health. “And getting vaccinated is the best choice to protect yourself, the people you love and to ensure you can continue to participate in these public and private events and settings. Our B.C. vaccine card is an essential interim action until we transition to a federally compliant proof of vaccine.”
The following list of settings will require proof of vaccination:
Businesses or event organizers may impose these requirements before September 13th as part of their safety plans, at their discretion.
“It is up to each business, the employer-employee relationship is a different one from somebody who is participating in an event or going to a restaurant,” said Henry.
The measures do not apply to K-12 schools, as guidance for schools will be provided in the coming days, says the Province.
The measures will apply to post-secondary campuses. Student housing will require proof of vaccination, taking effect on September 7th. The Province says more guidance for these settings will be developed in the coming days.
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