What is each province and territory doing?
Summer is almost here and with encouraging vaccination levels across the country, Canadians are finally looking forward to restrictions easing. Each province and territory has a different plan – with many of them contingent on vaccination rates.
The province’s reopening plan is tied to vaccination and hospitalization rates (a common theme that we will see in many other provinces below).
Currently in its first stage, Stage 2 of the plan begins today.
Stage 1, which began on June 1, saw allowances for outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people, personal and wellness services reopened, and restaurant patios reopened.
Stage 2 required that at least 60 per cent of Albertans aged 12 and over receive their first shot, and for hospitalization numbers to be below 500.
Today, libraries and movie theatres will reopen, restaurants can sit groups of up to six indoors and outdoors, and outdoor gatherings can include up to 20 people.
If all goes well, Alberta’s premier Jason Kenney indicated that the province could enter Stage 3 in July. Most public health restrictions could be lifted once 70 per cent of Albertans aged 12 and over receive their first dose of vaccine.
Like Alberta, BC has already begun the first stage of its reopening.
On May 25, Step 1 started. Currently in the province, outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people are allowed, and indoor gatherings of up to five people or one other household are allowed. Some organizations gatherings like weddings or funerals are allowed within limits.
Recreational travel within the province is allowed. Restaurants are allowed to serve (indoor and outdoor) groups of up to six people (not restricted to household or bubble).
The first stage required 60 per cent of the province’s 18+ population to have received their first shot (and well as stable counts of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations).
To enter Step 2, 65 per cent of the province’s 18+ population will need to be vaccinated with their first dose. The provincial government has indicated that the earliest the province will move into Stage 2 is June 15 (Step 3 should be around July 1, and Step 4 around September 7).
Manitoba has been hard hit during the pandemic’s third wave, and the province is still figuring out its reopening plans. On Saturday however, some restrictions will loosen and groups of up to five people will be allowed to gather outside.
The province has elaborated a three-phase plan to reopening the province. To enter the first stage, 75 per cent of eligible New Brunswickers need to have received their first dose. As of Monday, 70.3 per cent had done so.
The first phase of reopening will see, among other things, the removal of testing and isolation requirements for cross-border commuters entering from P.E.I., Newfoundland and Labrador and the Témiscouata region in Quebec.
Newfoundland & Labrador
Newfoundland recently announced that it would open to fully vaccinated adults without quarantine on July 1 so long as 75 per cent of residents aged 12 and up had received their first dose.
The province will begin its reopening on June 15:
- Formal gatherings of up to 150 people will be permitted, with physical distancing.
- Personal gatherings of up to 30 people allowed outdoors, with physical distancing. Indoor personal gatherings are limited to a household and 20 “steady close” contacts.
- Fireworks, parades and other outdoor ceremonies will be allowed, as well as outdoor tournaments.
- The next stages of the province’s reopening plans will be on August 15 and Sep 15.
Nova Scotia announced a five-step plan, with a minimum of two weeks between each stage.
The province is currently in phase 1 of its reopening plan, with phase 2 most likely to begin on June 16.
The first step allowed for the easing of restrictions on hospital visits. Two family members or support people are able to visit patients in intensive care, critically ill patients and women in labour and after they give birth.
Personal services businesses can be open by appointment only, live music is permitted on outdoor patios with one performer, there can be a maximum of 10 people per table, up to 10 people can gather outdoors (indoor gatherings are limited to your household – with exceptions for smaller households).
Initially announced for June 14, Stage 1 of Ontario’s reopening plan will actually begin on June 11.
Patios will (finally) be allowed to reopen, with up to four people per table. 10 people can gather outdoors, including for outdoor fitness classes. Concert venues, theatres, and cinemas may open outdoors with no more than 10 performers.
The first stage was tied to having 60 per cent of 18+ people in the province having received their first vaccine.
Stage 2 will start 21 days after the first one, depending on 70 per cent of eligible residents having received their first dose, and 20 per cent having received their second.
Prince Edward Island
P.E.I. started the first stage of its five-step reopening plan on June 6.
Personal gathering limits have been raised to 20 people. Restrictions on organized gatherings such as weddings and funerals have been eased. Up to 20 people can sit at the same table at a restaurant.
The province aims to enter the next step on June 27, where it plans to open its borders up to other Atlantic provinces. The second step is tied to 80 per cent of eligible P.E.I. residents having received their first dose.
The province relaxed its curfew on May 28. In addition, restaurant outdoor terraces were able to reopen, travel bans between regions were lifted and outdoor gatherings were permitted on private property and balconies.
On June 11, Quebec will enter the second phase of its reopening plan, with bar outdoor terraces opening and supervised outdoors sports and recreation allowed for groups of up to 25 people.
The province’s final plans are tied to 75 per cent of people in Quebec aged 12 and over having received their first vaccine dose by end of August or later.
Saskatchewan was one of the first provinces to announce reopening plans tied to vaccination levels.
Step 1 of the province’s reopening started on May 30. To enter Step 1, 70 per cent of residents aged 40 and over had to have received their first dose.
Restaurants and bars were able to increase the number of people on one table from four to six, private indoor and outdoor gatherings are limited to 10 people (there is a higher threshold for public gatherings).
Depending on vaccination levels, the province could enter Step 2 on June 20
The Northwest Territories began reopening yesterday, with future easing of restrictions tied to vaccination rates.
As of Wednesday, outdoor gatherings of up to 200 people were made possible. The first stage of reopening was tied to 66 to 75 per cent of residents aged 18+ having received their first shot. Currently, around 69 per cent of residents have received their first dose.
Across the three territories, Nunavut has seen the most COVID-19 outbreaks.
On May 21, COVID-19 restrictions were eased in the territories Baffin region. At the end of May, restrictions were eased in Iqaluit.
Among other measures, people are able to have indoor home gatherings with five people beyond household members, while outdoor gatherings of up to 25 people are allowed.
On June 14, travellers who are fully vaccinated will no longer need to isolate for two weeks when entering the province.
Yukon started its two-phased reopening on May 25.
Currently, self-isolation requirements have been lifted for those who are fully vaccinated. Social bubbles are limited to 20 people from no more than five households.
Bars and restaurants have returned to full capacity for table service (provided there is enough room for staff and guests to safely move around).