B.C. Premier John Horgan’s address to the province Tuesday night announced the extension of B.C’s state of emergency and the development of a new partnership between the province, businesses and B.C.’s tech sector. Restrictions are now in place for another two weeks until April 14.
The goal of the partnership is to connect B.C. companies to health care centres in need of supply. Further details are expected tomorrow.
“We are taking steps to secure our supply chains, but we are not the only people on the planet looking for this equipment,” said Horgan.
Horgan referenced examples such as distilleries making hand sanitizer and outdoor clothing suppliers manufacturing reusable medical garments as way to help supplement the supply chain.
“COVID-19 may be is the biggest challenge our province has faced,” the premier said.
Horgan asked British Columbians to “stay with us” and continue to practice COVID-19 safety measures like social distancing and working from home on the day when British Columbia surpassed 1,000 COVID-19 cases and added five new deaths. He also called on the province to put partisan and regional differences aside and come together to overcome the crisis.
“You might not feel it in your living room, but everyone in B.C. is pulling together,” said Horgan. “There are early signs that our actions are making a difference, but we can’t stop now."
In his speech, Horgan reminded the province that the safety measures are not suggestions, they are the law.
Echoing the thoughts of those banging pots and pans on their balconies, Horgan thanked those in the health care sector working on the front lines. Horgan also thanked employees from dockworkers to ferry and delivery drivers for “keeping the province moving.”
Horgan continued by addressing those facing rent payments tomorrow by introducing rental aid packages including $500 for four months for those affected by the crisis and enforcing freezes on evictions and rent increases.
Horgan asked British Columbians to recommit to the provincial strategy and to “bend the curve” together.