Categories: Home2News

B.C. fitness facilities call for COVID-19 closures to be ended

B.C.’s latest COVID-19 public health order closing fitness facilities along with liquor-primary bars and night clubs is set to expire on Tuesday, and yoga and gym operators and customers are calling for the closures to end.

After some gym operators defied the latest order, a petition from a Metro Vancouver fitness business calling for the province to show the evidence for closures or end them has gathered almost 50,000 signatures.

The closures were imposed in late December as spread of the Omicron variant was taking off and the amount of serious illness resulting from them was unknown. Data released Jan. 14 from the B.C. Centre for Disease Control showed the Omicron fifth wave of infections has peaked in B.C., as it has in other provinces and around the world.

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry declined to comment on changes coming in a briefing scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 18.

“I’m going to defer the Tuesday question to Tuesday,” Henry said Jan. 14 in response to questions about fitness facility closures. “I do think this spring, we’re going to be in a different position across Canada, across North America, across much of Europe. The caveat that we have is that this virus continues to change and modify itself, and surprise us in many ways — persist, as well.”

RELATED: West Kelowna gym ordered closed, fined $2,300

RELATED: Fitness centres, bars closed as B.C. heads into holidays

Henry said business safety plans for distance and capacity can be expected to stay in place for some time, but the closures and restrictions are constantly being reviewed as more is known about the latest variant. Hospitalizations have risen sharply in recent weeks with the surge in Omicron infections, but a data sample from Vancouver Coastal Health released Friday found that nearly half of the new patients were admitted for other health issues, and COVID-19 infection was discovered through hospital testing of all new admissions.

“In December, when we were looking at this curve going up and there were so many unknowns that we needed to take action that would protect our health care system as much as possible and account for the worst-case scenarios that could happen,” Henry said. “We try and do that in a measured way and finding that balance between not interfering with the things that we do in society that are so important for us, including the economy.”


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Tom Fletcher

Leave a Comment
Share
Published by
Tom Fletcher

Recent Posts

Kane nets hat trick as Oilers thump Flames 4-1 to take 2-1 playoff series lead

Connor McDavid has three assists for Edmonton in key win

3 hours ago

Vernon bowling centre caps off year with tournaments

Lincoln Lanes hosts Bowler of the Year and High Rollers events

4 hours ago

WHO chief: COVID pandemic is ‘most certainly not over’

‘We lower our guard at our peril’

5 hours ago

Report: Top Southern Baptists stonewalled sex abuse victims

Seven-month investigation was conducted by independent firm

5 hours ago

Okanagan man leading Canada’s U23 softball program

Peachland’s Doug Allin, also CAO in Spallumcheen, helped Canada win silver at Pan Am tourney…

6 hours ago

VIDEO: B.C. enforcer wins ‘King of the Rink’ battle

Maple Ridge’s Daniel Amesbury won competition with a TKO

8 hours ago