The Province of British Columbia has formally extended the provincial state of emergency for another two weeks.
The extension allows health and emergency management officials to continue to use extraordinary powers under the Emergency Program Act (EPA) to support the Province's COVID-19 pandemic response.
Already in its longest state of emergency to date, the extension will continue until at least March 2. At this time, the Province will consider the recommendations of B.C.'s health and emergency management officials on whether to extend it again.
The original declaration was made on March 18, 2020, the day after Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, declared a public health emergency.
“The fight against COVID-19 has been a long and difficult one, and I am proud of what British Columbians have accomplished to flatten the curve and protect our health-care system,” said Premier John Horgan.
“The beginning of our mass vaccination program is just weeks away, and health-care workers have already vaccinated virtually everyone in our long-term care system. We need to keep following public health orders, knowing they will keep us safe as we work to end the pandemic in B.C.”
COVID-19 Related Measures Act
The Province continues to use, with the support of police and other enforcement officials, measures under the EPA to limit the spread of COVID-19, including issuing tickets for owners, operators and event organizers who host an event or gathering contravening the PHO’s orders.
On July 10, 2020, the COVID-19 Related Measures Act came into force, enabling provisions created for citizens and businesses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic to continue as needed should the provincial state of emergency end.