Large gatherings seen at 2 Vancouver beaches on Saturday night

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VANCOUVER – Videos posted to social media show two large gatherings taking place on Vancouver beaches on Saturday night – one at Wreck Beach and one in English Bay – pushing for stricter enforcement of COVID-19 rules. The rally at Wreck Beach appeared to show hundreds of people gathered on the sand, standing almost side by side. A Twitter user posted the video with the message: “Guess nobody cares about Covid or social distancing in Wreck Beach !! ”

The second large gathering was seen in English Bay, where a drummer was playing buckets upside down in front of a crowd cheering and clapping and standing close to each other.

The events come just days after Premier John Horgan called directly on young people to stop partying, and British Columbia celebrities Ryan Reynolds and Seth Rogen sent similar messages to the people of the British Columbia.

British Columbia’s COVID-19 numbers rose last week. For the first time since the start of the pandemic, the province has reported more than 75 new cases for three consecutive days.

Last month, a drum circle formed at Third Beach. But, since then, no fines have been issued for violating physical distancing guidelines, prompting people on social media to request tickets to begin distribution.

Vancouver City Councilor Lisa Dominato said last week’s events were “disappointing”, adding that council was trying to treat “adults like adults”. But Dominato admits that imposing fines could be the next step.

“This is something we can certainly look at and we can certainly discuss with our staff, if it’s something we need to move towards, but we haven’t been there yet for sure,” a- she declared.

In a statement to CTV News on Sunday, Vancouver Police Department spokesperson Const. Tania Visitin said officers focused on educating people about the importance of physical distance.

“Currently, Vancouver Police do not issue tickets for non-compliance with social distancing / isolation / quarantine,” Visintin said. “The province, with (the provincial health officer) has taken the initiative on this and the officers specifically assigned to the enforcement with the province will enforce all social distancing laws.

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