Alberta to announce plan for 'safely easing' restrictions

By Tiffany Goodwein	
		COVID-19 update Province reports 452 new cases

By Tiffany Goodwein COVID-19 update Province reports 452 new cases

Stage 1 is starting two weeks from the date when 50 per cent of eligible Albertans have been vaccinated with at least one dose and hospitalizations are at 800 and declining. Premier Jason Kenney says this could happen by mid-June.

Stage 2 is expected to begin in mid-June and it will officially kick in two weeks after 60% of Albertans over the age of 12 have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Based on current figures, Stage 2 could begin in the middle of June, said Kenney.

Stage 3 will see all restrictions lifted, including the ban on indoor social gatherings, but isolation requirements for confirmed cases of COVID-19 and some protective measures in care settings will remain.

"The scale of Stage 2 reopening might seem daunting".

"The more that we can reduce transmission, the more effective vaccines will be in protecting our communities when we start to ease things up in the near future".

Wedding ceremonies - up to 10 people, including officiant, bride/groom, witnesses (receptions remain prohibited). Receptions are permitted outdoors only.

- Funeral ceremonies may have up to 20 people.

"Here we are 18 days later talking about being the first to reopen to allow everything; no masks needed indoors, no limits on the number of people drinking in bars and giving explicit permission to a super spreader event like the Calgary Stampede", said Talbot.

Dining parties are no longer restricted to households only.

Retail - 1/3 of fire code occupancy (must maintain ability to distance).

- Capacity for places of worship also increases to one-third occupancy.

Indoor dining resumes in B.C. restaurants as province slowly eases restrictions
COVID-19 vaccination rates have been climbing, with more than 60 per cent of adults in B.C. having received at least one dose. Bonnie Henry has extended the ban, and recreational travel continues to only be allowed only within your health region.

Gyms and fitness studios - open for solo and drop-in activities and indoor fitness classes with 3 metre distancing. "And so I worry", NPD Leader Rachel Notley told media on Wednesday, noting Ontario won't open indoor dining before 70 per cent of its adult population is vaccinated with one dose and 25 per cent with two doses, and large outdoor Quebec events will have to bubble audiences by groups of 250. This includes arenas, cinemas, theatres, museums, art galleries and libraries.

Youth activities, such as day camps and play centres, may resume, with restrictions.

- Personal and wellness services can provide walk-in services.

Post-secondary institutions can resume in-person learning.

Outdoor fixed seating facilities (grandstands) - 1/3 seated capacity.

Outdoor public gatherings (concerts/festivals) - up to 150 people.

Almost 50 per cent of the province has received at least one dose.

The government said it will be monitoring the reopening plan as it moves forward and could pause it to "respond to COVID-transmission trends at regional or provincial levels".

The government brought in tougher health orders three weeks ago to tamp down a surge in cases that saw Alberta lead North America in daily infection rates.

She said the reopening plan relies on just one vaccine dose and also doesn't factor in highly-transmissible variants.

"Today, we are truly near the end of this thing", Kenney said during Wednesday's press conference.

The regular update of COVID-19 numbers in Alberta is expected this afternoon at about 3:30 p.m.

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