Where each province and territory stands with reopening

By | April 27, 2020

TORONTO — There are signs that Canada is starting to flatten its curve in the battle against COVID-19, with modeling data suggesting that some provinces have already passed the peak, prompting leaders in those areas to talk about loosening movement restrictions.

New Brunswick has already loosened some of its restrictions and the first phase of Saskatchewan’s reopening will begin May 4, while provinces including Manitoba, Prince Edward Island, Ontario and Quebec have announced that reopening plans are in the works.

However, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who talked to the premiers April 24 about their recovery strategies, stressed that none of them hinge on people being immune to catching COVID-19 twice.

CTVNews.ca has compiled a guide on where each province and territory stands in reopening their economies, what will be open and which restrictions will remain in place.

BRITISH COLUMBIA

Current state: B.C.’s provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said April 22 that she wants to see “at least a couple of days” without any new COVID-19 cases before officials start easing restrictions.

Henry said when that happens, one of the first steps — which could come as early as May — will be to allow elective surgeries to resume. Henry has also asked the restaurant industry to come up with ideas on how to partially reopen in coming weeks, provided they can ensure some level of physical distancing among guests.

What’s open: Many businesses were never ordered to close during the pandemic, although some chose to of their own volition. Officials did not recommend the closure of outdoor recreation facilities including golf courses, city parks or playgrounds but those that voluntarily closed are now allowed to open back up. B.C.’s essential services are listed here.

Can I travel?: No, B.C. residents are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country must self-isolate for 14 days. Public transit services have been reduced.

Remaining restrictions: B.C.’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect. Provincial parks remain closed.

ALBERTA

Current state: Alberta has not yet released plans to reopen its economy. Premier Jason Kenney said in a news conference that a committee will meet this week to discuss a relaunch strategy. However, the city of Lloydminster, which is located on the Alberta-Saskatchewan border, could end up being half-open within a few weeks if it follows Saskatchewan’s reopening plan. Lloydminster’s mayor said April 23 that the city is working with emergency preparedness officials to decide on how to proceed.

What’s open: All non-essential businesses remain closed. Alberta’s essential services are listed here.

Can I travel?: No, Albertans are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country must self-isolate for 14 days. Bus service between Calgary and Edmonton has been cancelled, but local public transit continues.

Remaining restrictions: Alberta’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect.

SASKATCHEWAN

Current state: The first phase of Saskatchewan’s five-phase reopening will begin May 4. Premier Scott Moe says the dates of the later phases will be determined through monitoring COVID-19 cases in the prior phases.

What’s open: The first phase of the plan will reopen medical services such as dentists, optometrists and chiropractors will allow low-risk outdoor recreational actives including fishing, boating, golf courses and campgrounds starting May 15. Retail stores and salon services will reopen on May 19.

Dates for the rest of the phases have not been set, but phase three could see restaurants and gyms reopen with limited capacity. Phase four may include arenas, swimming pools and playgrounds and phase five would consider increasing the size of public gatherings.

Can I travel?: No, Saskatchewan residents are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country must self-isolate for 14 days. As of yet, Saskatchewan has not imposed any domestic travel restrictions. The government does recommend that people self-monitor for symptoms if they have travelled outside of Saskatchewan, but within Canada.

Regina and Saskatoon’s transit agencies are running under enhanced safety protocols.

Remaining restrictions: There are some long-term restrictions that will remain in place including school closures, visitor restrictions at some health-care facilities, travel restrictions and mandatory self-isolation orders. Public and private gatherings will still be capped at a maximum of 10 people.

MANITOBA

Current state: Premier Brian Pallister said Manitoba will be releasing information on how it plans to reopen non-essential businesses in the province this week. Pallister did not provide a date for when the plan would be announced, but said he will be looking at Saskatchewan’s plan very closely.

Manitoba’s Chief Public Health Officer Brent Roussin said on April 24 that some non-essential businesses may reopen in the near future including churches and restaurants. He said a 10-person limit on public gatherings may also be raised.

What’s open: All non-essential businesses remain closed. Manitoba’s essential services are listed here.

Can I travel?: No, Manitobans are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country, province or territory must self-isolate for 14 days. The province has also established checkpoints at main highways and airports to provide guidance about COVID-19 to travellers. Travel to remote communities within the province is prohibited.

Remaining restrictions: Manitoba’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect.

Click on circles for more information.

ONTARIO

Current state: On April 27, the Ontario government unveiled its three-phase plan to reopen. It’s unclear which parts of the province will open first, and specific dates have not been included in the plan. The plan is laid out in a series of stages, which government officials said are necessary to ensure a return to normal is made safely. However, even after the reopening is completed, physical distancing measures will be continued.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford said April 28 that his government will release “clear, sector-specific labour guidelines” later this week for how businesses will operate once the economy reopens.

Ontario Health Minister Christine Elliott outlined several criteria the province would need to see before the reopening process would begin including a two-to-four week period of fewer daily new cases, a decrease in serious cases in hospitals and a decrease in community spread.

What’s open: All non-essential businesses remain closed. Ontario’s essential services are listed here.

Can I travel?: No, Ontarians are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country must self-isolate for 14 days. As of yet, Ontario has not imposed any inter-provincial travel restrictions. Transit is still running within the province but on a reduced schedule.

Remaining restrictions: Ontario’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect. Concerts and sporting events will be restricted for the foreseeable future.

QUEBEC

Current state: Quebec Premier Francois Legault announced April 27 that the province will begin reopening elementary schools and daycares outside of Montreal on May 11 and inside the city on May 19, but only if the state of COVID-19 infections in hospitals remains stable. Legault says attendance won’t be mandatory. High schools, junior colleges and universities in the province will not reopen until September.

Quebec is expected to roll out plans for opening the rest of the province’s economy later this week.

What’s open: All non-essential businesses remain closed. Quebec’s essential services are listed here.

Quebec Premier Francois Legault announced April 28 that construction and civil engineering companies, manufacturing plants and retail stores not in shopping malls will gradually reopen throughout the month of May.

Can I travel?: No, Quebecers are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country must self-isolate for 14 days. The Quebec government has placed checkpoints on the border between Ottawa and Gatineau to prevent non-essential travel into the province. Montreal public transit is running with physical distancing measures in place, but those with possible COVID-19 symptoms are asked not to ride.

Remaining restrictions: Quebec’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect.

NEWFOUNDLAND AND LABRADOR

Current state: Newfoundland Premier Dwight Ball said in late April that it is not yet time for the province to reopen the economy, despite the province reporting no new case numbers or single-digit increases for the last nine days.

What’s open: All non-essential businesses remain closed. Newfoundland and Labrador’s essential services are listed here.

Can I travel?: No, Newfoundland and Labrador residents are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country, province or territory must self-isolate for 14 days. Public transit is running on reduced service and buses are limited to only nine passengers at a time.

Remaining restrictions: Newfoundland and Labrador’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect.

NEW BRUNSWICK

Current state: New Brunswick loosened some of its physical distancing measures April 24 after its seventh straight day with no new cases of COVID-19.

What’s open: As part of the first stage, parks and beaches have been reopened, golf courses are back in business, universities and colleges can open parts of their campuses for students in certain circumstances, and religious services can be held again as long as they are outdoors and people remain in their vehicles, two metres apart. Fishing and hunting is also allowed. Households can socialize again, but only with one other household.

The second stage could begin within two-to-four weeks and would include the reopening of daycares, offices, restaurants, ATV trails, campground and allow elective surgeries to proceed.

Can I travel?: No, New Brunswickers are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country, province or territory must self-isolate for 14 days. Local transit officials have warned against non-essential travel on their routes.

Remaining restrictions: Large gatherings such as festivals and concerts are prohibited through Dec. 31, 2020, but that is subject to change. Restaurants remain closed except for delivery and takeout, and retail stores are closed as well.

NOVA SCOTIA

Current state: Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health, said April 23 that there are no immediate plans to lift any COVID-19 restrictions. Strang said the province is currently working on a plan about the gradual lifting of restrictions to be discussed with the premier this week.

What’s open: All non-essential businesses remain closed. Nova Scotia’s essential services are listed here.

Can I travel?: No, Nova Scotians are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country, province or territory must self-isolate for 14 days. Public transit in Halifax is on reduced hours and ferries are restricting the number of passengers.

Remaining restrictions: Nova Scotia’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect.

PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND

Current state: Prince Edward Island Premier Dennis King announced on April 28, that the province will ease some public health measures imposed amid the COVID-19 pandemic beginning May 1. Phase two of the four-phase plan will see some retail businesses reopen starting May 22.

What’s open: Phase one of easing in the province includes resuming elective surgeries, reopening medical services including physiotherapists, optometrists and chiropractors, construction services, and child care for essential service workers. Non-contact outdoor recreational activities such as hiking, cycling, golfing, shooting ranges, fishing and boating are also allowed.

Gatherings are still limited to five people but they can now include members of different households.

Can I travel?: No, Islanders are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the province. People entering from another country, province or territory must self-isolate for 14 days with the exception of essential service workers and flight crews. Public transportation is only recommended for commuting to work, medical appointments and shopping for essentials.

Remaining restrictions: A ban on mass gatherings will be reviewed on an ongoing basis. Visitor restrictions remain in place at long-term care facilities. All non-essential businesses remain closed.

YUKON

Current state: Yukon’s chief medical officer Dr. Brendan Hanley said April 24 that the process of developing a reopening plan for the territory is underway but won’t be available for several weeks.

What’s open: All non-essential businesses remain closed. Yukon’s essential services are listed here.

Can I travel?: No, Yukoners are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the territory. People entering from another country, province or territory by road or air must self-isolate for 14 days. Residents must have a detailed self-isolation plan.

Remaining restrictions: Yukon’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect.

NORTHWEST TERRITORIES

Current state: All five of the Northwest Territories’ coronavirus cases are now in recovery, but health officials say COVID-19 restrictions in the territory are expected to continue for at least another month.

Dr. Kami Kandola, the N.W.T.’s chief public health officer, said on Wednesday that easing restrictions can only be considered after increasing testing by opening up the criteria for getting tested and making rapid testing more widely available.

Once that happens, Kandola said she’ll allow campgrounds, parks and non-essential businesses to reopen. She said mass gatherings will be the last thing she allows to return.

What’s open: All non-essential businesses remain closed. The N.W.T.’s essential services are listed here.

Can I travel?: No, residents of the Northwest Territories are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the territory. People entering from another country or elsewhere in Canada must self-isolate for 14 days in Yellowknife, Inuvik, Hay River or Fort Smith. No N.W.T. resident is allowed to self-isolate in a small community. All travel into the territory is prohibited with the exception of those transporting essential goods and essential service workers.

Remaining restrictions: The N.W.T.’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect.

NUNAVUT

Current state: Nunavut has not announced any plans to reopen its economy. As of April 27, there were no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the territory.

What’s open: All non-essential businesses remain closed. Nunavut’s essential services are listed here.

Can I travel?: No, Nunavut residents are being urged to avoid all non-essential travel outside of the territory. Only Nunavut residents and critical workers are allowed into the territory. Residents who have been in the south must self-isolate at government-designated quarantine sites in Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa or Yellowknife before they are allowed to return.

Remaining restrictions: Nunavut’s state of emergency public health orders remain in effect.

Vizualization by CTVNews.ca’s Mahima Singh

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