B.C. Premier John Horgan speaks at B.C. legislature on the province’s mass vaccination plan for COVID-19, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)

B.C. Premier John Horgan speaks at B.C. legislature on the province’s mass vaccination plan for COVID-19, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)

COVID-19 quarantine not an option for B.C., John Horgan says

Apres-ski parties increase risk, not interprovincial travel

People coming from other provinces for skiing or other non-essential reasons are not increasing B.C.’s COVID-19 risk unless they mingle and party in violation of public health orders on gatherings, Premier John Horgan says.

Asked Wednesday if B.C. is considering following Manitoba’s lead to impose a 14-day quarantine on people entering from other provinces, Horgan said “we can’t and we’re not.” It’s “the logistics, not the legalities,” that rule out border and airport checks similar to those in place for international travel.

“There are four roads in and out of Manitoba,” Horgan said. “We have dozens of roads in and out of British Columbia.”

The other consideration is the actual risk of spreading COVID-19. Using the example of visitors to Whistler, Horgan said people bundled up and skiing are not themselves a risk to others, and Dr. Bonnie Henry’s latest advice on interprovincial travel is that there isn’t evidence that the travel itself is a major problem.

“It’s when people leave the hill and look for the party that we’re seeing transmission,” Horgan said, and that goes for people heading to Whistler from the Lower Mainland or Vancouver Island as well as out-of-province visitors.

With legal advice that attempting to ban movement between provinces is unconstitutional, and faced with the impossible task of trying to monitor travel in and out of B.C., Horgan said the best course for him and other premiers is to continue to remind people that this is not the time for non-essential travel, within the province or between them.

RELATED: B.C. ramps up screening for ‘variants of concern’

RELATED: Canada seeks smaller syringes to ration vaccine

If people come into the province and don’t follow the same rules as residents, B.C. law enforcement will “come down on you like a ton of bricks” and the people of B.C. won’t stand for it, he said: “We talk about COVID fatigue, it’s COVID exhaustion, let’s be honest.”

It has been one year since the first active case of the novel coronavirus was confirmed in B.C., and more than 1,100 people have died. Horgan was asked if his or Henry’s optimism about controlling the pandemic has diminished. He said the latest news about further delays in vaccine and the emergence of new virus variants has been difficult.

“I’d cut her some slack if she was a bit grumpy on Monday,” he said.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A health care worker prepares to test a Coastal GasLink field worker for COVID-19. (Coastal GasLink photo)
Coastal GasLink begins COVID screening of pipeline workers

Construction is once again ramping up following Northern Health approval of COVID management plan

Deane Gorsline, is a former Burns Lake resident who has been diagnosed with ALS. (Submitted/Lakes District News)
ALS Action Canada group ropes in political leaders

Hopes to get more support and ultimately better treatment options for Canadians

FILE – A COVID-19 vaccine being prepared. (Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing)
B.C. seniors 80 years and older to get COVID vaccine details over next 2 weeks: Henry

Province is expanding vaccine workforce as officials ramp up age-based rollout

(Black Press file photo)
Charges laid against two suspects in pre-Christmas home invasion

An 88-year-old woman was hospitalized after being bear-sprayed in the face Dec. 18, 2020

Abbotsford’s Kris Collins turned to TikTok out of boredom when the provincial COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020. She now has over 23 million followers on the video app. Photo: Submitted
Internet famous: Abbotsford’s Kris Collins is a TikTok comedy queen

Collins has found surprise stardom alone with a phone

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
B.C. children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

Pig races at the 145th annual Chilliwack Fair on Aug. 12, 2017. Monday, March 1, 2021 is Pig Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Feb. 28 to March 6

Pig Day, Canadian Bacon Day and Grammar Day are all coming up this week

Staff from the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, passersby, RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue carried a sick 300-kilogram steller sea lion up the steep bluff at Invermere Beach in north Nanaimo in an attempt to save the animal’s life Thursday. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Rescue Centre)
300-kilogram sea lion muscled up from B.C. beach in rescue attempt

Animal dies despite efforts of Nanaimo marine mammal rescue team, emergency personnel and bystanders

Doctors and counsellors warn of an increase in panic attacks, anxiety, depression and suicide ideas between ages 10 to 14, in Campbell River. ( Black Press file photo)
Extended pandemic feeding the anxieties of B.C.’s youth

Parents not sure what to do, urged to reach out for help

Kara Sorensen, diagnosed with lung cancer in July, says it’s important for people to view her as healthy and vibrant, rather than sick. (Photo courtesy of Karen Sorensen)
B.C. woman must seek treatment overseas for inoperable lung cancer

Fundraising page launched on Karen Sorensen’s behalf, with a goal of $250,000

Gina Adams as she works on her latest piece titled ‘Undying Love’. (Submitted photo)
‘Toothless’ the kitty inspires B.C. wood carver to break out the chainsaw

Inspired by plight of a toothless cat, Gina Adams offers proceeds from her artwork to help animals

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents bill to delay B.C.’s budget as late as April 30, and allow further spending before that, B.C. legislature, Dec. 8, 2020. (Hansard TV)
How big is B.C.’s COVID-19 deficit? We’ll find out April 20

More borrowing expected as pandemic enters second year

Most Read