Vernon chamber optimistic Step 2 changes moving BC toward recovery

Chamber welcomes Step 2

The Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce says it's hopeful easing of COVID-19 restrictions will move British Columbia closer to recovery.

The province announced Step 2 of its restart plan on Monday, taking effect, June 15.

“We are pleased to hear that the number of COVID cases in B.C. have decreased while hospitalizations have stabilized, and our thoughts continue to be with those individuals and families impacted by this virus,” chamber president Krystin Kempton said in a press release.

“It’s extremely good news that the non-essential travel ban between regions in B.C. has lifted. This means that families can be reunited and British Columbians can travel within the province, meaning a significant boost for the tourism and hospitality sectors, which have been hit hard by the pandemic. It’s important to note that out-of-province non-essential travel is still being discouraged.”

Provincial authorities continue to monitor case counts and hospitalizations, and the earliest start date for Step 3 is July 1, and Sept. 7 for Step 4.

“For the restart plan to progress, all of us as individuals must keep doing our part by following the protocols, being vaccinated and being kind to each other. We would also encourage residents to support local, whether it’s dining in or takeout, resuming fitness classes or ordering online from a Vernon business,” said Kempton.

Businesses can expect updated guidance from WorkSafe BC before July 1.

“It is vital that business organizations, such as chambers of commerce, provide constructive input as the economy begins to reopen, and we would encourage MLAs and cabinet ministers to speak directly to business owners,” said Kempton.

“There is also a need for the provincial government to continue to provide much-needed financial support to businesses and non-profits as the impact of the pandemic continues to be felt.”

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