In likely his last statement of a tumultuous year, B.C.’s Premier John Horgan says that the rolling out of COVID-19 vaccinations is cause to celebrate for New Year’s Eve – but is asking that British Columbians follow the rules.
“In the months ahead, vaccines will be available to all British Columbians who want them,” Horgan said Thursday (Dec. 31). “Until then, however, we must redouble our efforts to fight the pandemic and keep ourselves and others healthy and safe.”
On Wednesday, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry tweaked ongoing health orders – which include a ban on all social gatherings – to include a ban on liquor sales from 8 p.m. on New Year’s Eve until 9 a.m. on Jan. 1.
The ban is intended to curb celebrations, which pose increased risk for transmission of the novel coronavirus.
Horgan called 2020 a year of hardship and heartbreak, as well as one filled with lessons.
“We have learned time and again how strong and resilient we are when we come together in common purpose,” he said.
“We saw this in the spring, when we flattened the COVID-19 infection rate and restarted our social and economic activities over the summer. We are seeing this again now, as we work together with our public health experts and front-line and essential workers to battle the second wave of COVID-19.”
He added that in the months ahead vaccines will be available to all British Columbians who want them. Rolled out earlier this month, immunization is only available to health-care workers on the front lines and some seniors in long-term care homes.
“There are better days ahead. By taking care of each other, we will get through this.”
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