VIDEO: Alberta re-opening Thursday – except Calgary and Brooks

Alberta will start the first phase of re-opening Thursday but Calgary and Brooks will open slower.

Premier Jason Kenney announced today that the re-opening will proceed in most parts of the province.

On Thursday retail stores, hair salons, daycares, day camps and museums will be allowed to open – with restrictions. People will be able to dine in restaurants and cafes with 50 per cent capacity.

On Thursday retail stores, hair salons, daycares, day camps and museums open – with restrictions. People will be able to dine in restaurants and cafes with 50 per cent capacity. Click To Tweet

Stage one – all areas of Alberta except cities of Calgary and Brooks

  • With increased infection prevention and control measures to minimize the risk of increased transmission of infections, some businesses and facilities can start to resume operations on May 14 in all areas except the cities of Calgary and Brooks:
    • Retail businesses, such as clothing, furniture and bookstores. All vendors at farmers markets will also be able to operate.
    • Museums and art galleries.
    • Daycares and out-of-school care with limits on occupancy.
    • Hairstyling and barbershops.
    • Cafés, restaurants, pubs and bars will be permitted to reopen for table service only at 50 per cent capacity.
    • Day camps, including summer school, will be permitted with limits on occupancy.
    • Post-secondary institutions will continue to deliver courses; however, there will be more flexibility to include in-person delivery once the existing health order prohibiting in-person classes is lifted.
    • Places of worship and funeral services, if they follow specific guidance already online. 
    • The resumption of some scheduled, non-urgent surgeries will continue gradually.
    • Regulated health professions are permitted to offer services as long as they continue to follow approved guidelines set by their professional colleges.
  • In Calgary and Brooks, the relaunch will be gradual over 18 days due to higher COVID-19 case numbers in these communities.

Still not permitted in stage one:

  • Gatherings of more than 15 people unless otherwise identified in public health orders or guidance.
  • Gatherings of 15 people or fewer must follow personal distancing and other public health guidelines.
  • Arts and culture festivals, major sporting events and concerts, all of which involve close physical contact.
  • Movie theatres, theatres, pools, recreation centres, arenas, spas, gyms and nightclubs will remain closed.
  • Services offered by allied health disciplines like acupuncture and massage therapy.
  • Visitors to patients at health-care facilities will continue to be limited; however, outdoor visits are allowed with a designated essential visitor and one other person (a group of up to three people, including the resident), where space permits. However, physical distancing must be practised and all visitors must wear a mask or some other form of face covering.
  • In-school classes for kindergarten to Grade 12 students.

Recommendations:

  • Travel outside the province is not recommended.
  • Remote working is advised where possible.
  • Encourage Albertans in Calgary and Brooks to wait to access services upon reopening in their communities rather than travelling for services.
  • Albertans are encouraged to download the ABTraceTogether mobile contact tracing app and use it when in public.

Those businesses in Calgary and Brooks, however, won’t be able to open until May 25.

Stage one – cities of Calgary and Brooks

Opening May 14:

  • Retail businesses, such as clothing, furniture and bookstores. All vendors at farmers markets will also be able to operate.
  • Museums and art galleries.
  • Daycares and out-of-school care with limits on occupancy.
  • The resumption of some scheduled, non-urgent surgeries will continue gradually.
  • Regulated health professions are permitted to offer services as long as they continue to follow approved guidelines set by their professional colleges.

Opening May 25:

  • Hairstyling and barbershops.
  • Cafés, restaurants, pubs and bars will be permitted to reopen for table service only at 50 per cent capacity.

Opening June 1:

  • Day camps, including summer school, will be permitted with limits on occupancy.
  • Post-secondary institutions will continue to deliver courses; however, there will be more flexibility to include in-person delivery once the existing health order prohibiting in-person classes is lifted.
  • Places of worship and funeral services, if they follow specific guidance already online.

If the first phase of re-opening goes well then the province will move into stages two and three, said Kenney. Stage two isn’t anticipated until June 19.

“Throughout each phase there will be an evaluation and a monitoring period to determine if we need to adjust restrictions up or down,” said Kenney.

The projected usage of hospital beds was lower than predicted. The provincial projection models anticipated hospitalizations for COVID-19 would peak at about 600 in mid-May with ICU-bed usage peaking at about 190.

But the combined usage of hospital beds so far has peaked at 96 on April 30 and has been declining ever since.

As of May 13 only 70 people were in hospital for the virus and 11 of those in ICU.

The number of active cases of the virus have fallen since April 30 when there were 3,148. As of May 12 there were 1,361 active cases.

sarah.murphy@albertapressleader.ca

Sarah Murphy/Alberta Press

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