COVID-19 Quick Sheet

Latest updates:

All official government and most up-to-date information sources can be found here:  

OFFICIAL INFORMATION SOURCES


At-a-glance info is listed below, but the most up to date info can be found via the Official Government Sources(Updated: March 31)

 

EMERGENCY STATUS & LAW
◼️ Public Health Emergency declared, effective March 17, 2020.
◼️ Provincial State of Emergency declared, effective March 18, 2020.
◼️ Municipal bylaw officers have been empowered to support enforcement of the provincial health officer’s orders for business closures and gatherings.  (see March 26 update)
◼️ Courts and statutory decision-makers have been provided discretion to waive, suspend or extend time periods related to their powers.
◼️ Broader use of communications tools for health-care workers and other public-sector staff who are responding to the COVID-19 state of emergency have been permitted.


Mandatory orders on this page are indicated with “⚠️”

 

SOCIAL DISTANCING ORDERS
◼️ Gatherings larger than 50 people are banned.⚠️ People who ignore public health orders, such as the limit on the size of gatherings, can now be fined upwards of $25,000.
◼️ Maintain minimum 2m distance from others.⚠️
◼️ Stay home as much as possible, do not visit with friends (call them instead).⚠️
◼️ It’s okay to go outside for fresh air and exercise, but stay away from others.⚠️
◼️ Self-isolate if you are sick, even if it is not COVID-19.⚠️
◼️ Travellers entering the country and anyone exposed to someone diagnosed with COVID-19 must self-isolate for fourteen days. Violations to this order are now punishable by law up to a maximum fine of up to $750,000 and/or imprisonment for six months.⚠️


HEALTH CARE
◼️ New clinical guidance has been issued to support people who use substances.
◼️ Health sector workers are to remain at one facility only during pandemic ⚠️
◼️ Seniors can call the BC 2-1-1 service for help address immediate needs associated with the impact of COVID-19
◼️ Scheduled elective surgeries and procedures are being postponed.
◼️ Visitor restrictions are in place for all Interior Health facilities, including hospitals, long-term care, assisted living sites, community health centres and clinics. For those living in other health authority areas, check online before you go.
◼️ Long-term care facilities are restricting visitors to essential visits only.
◼️ Choose virtual health care services whenever available, physicians will be compensated.
◼️ Physician notes are NOT required for prescription refills by pharmacists.
◼️ Dentists should provide emergency services only.
◼️ MSP coverage wait times are waived for those who have been out of province and returned.
◼️ Pay parking is temporarily suspended for the public, staff and medical staff, at all health authority owned and operated sites.


RETAIL & SERVICES
◼️ An Essential Services List has been issued. Any business or service that has not been ordered to close and is also not identified on the essential service list may stay open if they can adapt their services and workplace to the orders and recommendations of the PHO.
◼️ Secondary resale of food, medical supplies, personal protective equipment, cleaning and other essential supplies has been banned. People who resell essential goods, like medical gear and cleaning equipment, can now be fined up to $10,000. ⚠️ (see May 26 update)
◼️ $3-million emergency grant has been established to support Food Banks.
◼️ Farmer’s Markets have been ordered to sell food only. Farmer’s Markets moving to an online model.
◼️ Auto insurance: Renew by email or phone. Licence renewals and payment deferrals now available
◼️ BC Liquor Stores: Will stay open, though on reduced hours.
◼️ BC Service Centres will stay open, but the first hour of service is dedicated to seniors and other vulnerable people. You can also call for service: 1-800-663-7867. > Nelson Office  >Trail Office
◼️ Restaurants are open for pick-up/delivery service only.⚠️
◼️ Restaurants may now sell liquor products with meals for pick-up/delivery using staff with Serving-It-Right certification.
◼️ Liquor distilleries are now permitted to produce alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
◼️ By public health order, the following retail services are closed throughout BC:

▪️ Personal service establishments, such as salons, spas, massage, tattoo parlours, etc.⚠️
▪️ Casinos.⚠️
▪️ Liquor-primary establishments, such as bars and clubs.⚠️


PUBLIC RECREATION, ARTS, OUTDOORS & BACKCOUNTRY:
◼️ Open burning restrictions have been implemented to reduce pollution (campfires still ok).
◼️ Community centres, playgrounds, and sports fields may be closed. Check before you go.
◼️ Parks Canada: Visitor services at all national parks and historic sites are closed.
◼️ BC Parks: Many trails and facilities may be closed. Check online before you go.
◼️ All campgrounds are closed.
◼️ BC Summer Games has been cancelled.
◼️ A $3-million Arts and Culture Resilience Supplement has been established to support arts & culture businesses


HOUSING

◼️ FAQ and updates to emergency residential tenancy policies.
◼️ New temporary rent supplement will provide up to $500 per month, paid directly to landlords (see March 25 update)
◼️ Halting all evictions, except in exceptional circumstances (see March 25 update)
◼️ Annual rent increases frozen until further notice (see March 25 update)
◼️ Restrict the use of common areas by tenants (see March 25 update)
◼️ BC Hydro and FortisBC bill deferral & payment plans available.
◼️ Mortgage payment deferrals available for CMHC-insured loans. Check with your lender about payment deferral options.


EMPLOYMENT & INCOME ASSISTANCE
◼️ All workplaces must ensure a safe working environment — implementation of social distancing and access to hand washing is required.
   ℹ️ Read more: WorkSafeBC Instructions for employers and employees
   ℹ️ Read more: Guidelines for active construction sites
   ℹ️ Read more: Guidelines for manufacturers
   ℹ️ Read more: Guidelines for mining and smelting
   ℹ️ Read more: Guidelines for retail and grocery stores
   ℹ️ Read more: Guidelines for Industrial Camps
◼️ Employers cannot require a doctors notes or testing for people to stay home from work.⚠️
◼️ Workers may take unpaid, job-protected leave if they are unable to work for reasons relating to COVID-19, retroactive to Jan 27, 2020.
◼️ Workers now have three days of unpaid, job-protected leave each year for people who cannot work due to illness or injury. This is a permanent change.
◼️ One-week waiting period for Employment Insurance benefits has been waived. Call 1-833-381-2725.
◼️ Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) provides $2000/month to workers who have lost their income and do not qualify for EI. This replaces the Emergency Support Benefit and Emergency Care Benefit announced last week.
◼️ BC Emergency Benefit provides an additional tax-free $1,000 payment to those on EI or CERB.
◼️ Boost to GST-credit to low-income individuals and families. (Effective May 2020)
◼️ Boost to B.C. Climate Action Tax Credit. (Effective July 2020)
◼️ Tax return filing due date is deferred to June 1. Payments owed are deferred until after August 31.


CHILDREN & FAMILIES
◼️ New Keep Learning website introduced to support B.C.’s K-12 students while in-class education is suspended
◼️ Extended supports have been implemented to help youth in care during pandemic
◼️ In-class instruction is suspended at all K-12 schools.
◼️ All parents who can, should care for their children at home. This makes it easier for providers to follow enhanced preventative health measures.
◼️ Enhanced government funding is available for child care providers that stay open and that close.
◼️ Providers receiving enhanced government funding (above) cannot charge parent fees for any periods of closure or for vacant spaces and must reserve spaces for families. Check with your provider to see if they are in this program.
◼️ Boost to Canada Child Benefit payments to low-income families. (Effective May 2020)
   ℹ️ Read More: BC Government COVID-19 child care supports
◼️ Six-month interest-free moratorium on repayment of Canada Student Loans and BC Student Loans. (Effective April 2020)
◼️ Reduction in minimum withdrawals from Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs).


BUSINESSES – See also Retail & Services
◼️ All businesses must adjust their operations to meet social distancing orders and should implement enhanced cleaning, or close.⚠️
◼️ BC Hydro and FortisBC bill deferral & payment plans available.
◼️ Wage subsidy for small businesses, non-profit organizations, and charities to prevent worker lay-offs.
◼️ Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP) for small and medium-sized businesses.
◼️ Tax payments owed are deferred until after August 31.
◼️ Liquor stores are now going to be closed Sundays (effective March 28th)
◼️ Payment for the following BC business taxes are deferred until after Sept 30: Employer health tax (EHT), provincial sales tax (PST), municipal and regional district tax, tobacco tax, motor fuel tax, carbon tax. Scheduled April 1 increases to provincial carbon tax and PST are delayed.
◼️ 50% cut to the school tax for business and industry property classes, to be passed onto tenants on triple-net leases.


LOCAL & INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL
◼️ BC Ferries: Passengers may stay inside their vehicles the entire trip; on board food service is minimal. Priority access is to be given for residents, and essential goods and workers.
◼️ BC Transit, TransLink: Rear door, fare-free boarding on all buses. Those with accessibility needs can still load at front.
◼️ Canadians currently abroad are strongly advised to return to Canada now while they are still able. Call 1-613-996-8885 or email sos@international.gc.ca for assistance.
◼️ Entry into Canada will be denied to all non-essential travellers who are not Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents and their immediate family. US citizens will no longer be exempt.
◼️ Avoid all non-essential travel outside of Canada, including to the USA.
◼️ Anyone exhibiting symptoms will be actively refused boarding onto aircraft, including Canadians.
◼️ Overseas international flights entering Canada will be restricted to YVR, YYZ, YUL, YYC only.
◼️ Travellers entering the country must self-isolate for fourteen days. Violations are now punishable by law up to a maximum fine of up to $750,000 and/or imprisonment for six months.⚠️
◼️ $5000 emergency loan available to Canadians travelling abroad through Global Affairs Canada. Call 1-613-996-8885 or email sos@international.gc.ca.


SUMMARY OF FINANCIAL SUPPORTS
◼️ BC Hydro  and FortisBC bill deferral & payment plans available.
◼️ One-week waiting period for Employment Insurance benefits has been waived. Call 1-833-381-2725.
◼️ Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2000/month to workers who have lost their income and do not qualify for EI. This replaces the Emergency Support Benefit and Emergency Care Benefit announced last week.
◼️ Tax-free $1,000 payment (BC Emergency Benefit) to those whose ability to work has been affected by COVID-19.
◼️ Boost to GST-credit and Canada Child Benefit payments to low-income individuals and families. (Effective May 2020)
◼️ Boost to B.C. Climate Action Tax Credit. (Effective July 2020)
◼️ Six-month interest-free moratorium on repayment of Canada Student Loans and BC Student Loans. (Effective April 2020)
◼️ Reduction in minimum withdrawals from Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs).
◼️ Mortgage payment deferrals available for CMHC-insured loans. Many lenders also offer payment deferrals.
◼️ Tax return filing due date is deferred to June 1. Payments owed are deferred until after August 31.
◼️ Wage subsidy for small businesses, non-profit organizations, and charities to prevent worker lay-offs.
◼️ Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP) for small and medium-sized businesses.
◼️ Payment for the following BC business taxes are deferred until after Sept 30: Employer health tax (EHT), provincial sales tax (PST), municipal and regional district tax, tobacco tax, motor fuel tax, carbon tax. Scheduled April 1 increases to provincial carbon tax and PST are delayed.
◼️ 50% cut to the school tax for business and industry property classes, to be passed onto tenants on triple-net leases.
◼️ $5000 emergency loan available to Canadians travelling abroad through Global Affairs Canada. Call 1-613-996-8885 or email sos@international.gc.ca.
ℹ️ Read More: BC’s COVID-19 Action Plan: B.C.’s first steps to support people, businesses
ℹ️ Canada’s COVID-19 Support for Canadians and Businesses

…Stay safe! We can do this together!