The order and direction of the Provincial Health Officer (PHO) about Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley restrictions is now final and posted on the Provinces’ website.
The Order and what it means to sport:
The Order States: “No person or municipality may provide or host and no person may participate in an indoor sport unless the sport involves no physical contact between the participants.”
- Clarification: Indoor sports can only conduct physical distanced activities. This does not mean all indoor sports are in Phase 2. Some Phase 3 activities may be possible as long as physical distance can be maintained along with other safety measures that we have implemented in return to sport (e.g., increased cleaning protocols).
The Order States: “No person may attend as a spectator at an indoor sport activity unless this is necessary to provide care to a participant.”
- Clarification: We understand that “unless necessary to provide care to a participant” can be interpreted many ways. We are working with public health to provide more clarity.
The Order States: “No person may travel to or from the affected area or between the regions of the Fraser Health Authority and the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority for any sport related activity, including practice, training, games or tournaments, unless they are an identified by Canadian Sports Institute Pacific as a high performance athlete affiliated with an accredited provincial or national sports organization and are already training in the affected area and subject to the safety guidelines of their provincial sports organization.”
- Clarification: The Order now clearly states that travel is not permitted for these or any sport activities. However, high performance athletes and their coaches are permitted to travel to, from and between the Fraser and Vancouver Coastal Health regions. High performance athletes are individuals that have been identified to a targeted athlete list with Canadian Sport Institute Pacific by their PSO or NSO.
The Order States: “No person or municipality may provide or host and no person may participate in a group indoor fitness activity until guidelines for group indoor fitness activities have been approved by the provincial health officer and the person or municipality who provides or hosts the activity has submitted an updated safety plan in accordance with those guidelines with respect to the activity to the Medical Health Officer and the safety plan has been approved. Once a safety plan has been approved, it must be posted in a place easily visible to participants.”
- What it means: Group indoor fitness activities (e.g., dance, spin, etc.) will need to have an approved plan before they are able to reopen and operate again. This Order is NOT required for sport. We understand that some sport organizations have been receiving conflicting information directly from health officials, but now that the Order is available we will work with health agencies to improve the interpretations and communication.
Provincial health officer orders are always a last resort, but right now these additional measures are required in the Vancouver Coastal and Fraser Health regions. We need everyone to re-double our efforts to protect our communities.
Please access http://ow.ly/tiyU50CiX7D for more information.