The first phase will begin on June 2 at 8 a.m. and will include:
- Restaurants and bars can open their outdoor patios, as long as there is six feet of distance between groups and a maximum of 10 people per table.
- Nova Scotians will be able to gather outdoors with a regular group of no more than 10 people.
- The limit for indoor gatherings remains the people you live with – two households with one or two people can still meet, but they must be the same two households each time.
- Non-essential retail stores can operate at 25% capacity, ensuring physical distancing.
- Residents of long-term care facilities may receive visitors outside – visitors should always wear masks but do not need to maintain a physical distance if the resident is fully immunized.
- Religious gatherings can be held outdoors with a limit of 10 people plus officiants when organized by a recognized organization. Drive-in services are permitted with no limit on the number of people who can attend.
- Wedding and funeral ceremonies remain limited to five people plus officiants if they take place indoors – if they take place outdoors, they are limited to 10 people plus officiants. Receptions and visits are still not allowed.
- Personal services, such as hair salons, barber shops and spas, can only operate by appointment and cannot offer services that require the client to remove their mask.
- Organized sports practices and fitness and leisure facilities can offer outdoor activities up to a limit of 10 people with physical distancing, or several groups of 10 distanced.
Travel will no longer be restricted in most of the province.
But people are still being asked to avoid non-essential travel to and from the Cape Breton Regional Municipality and parts of the Halifax Regional Municipality, the two regions of the province where the community is confirmed.
“Slow and cautious approach”
Each phase has an overall duration of two to four weeks, depending on COVID-19 activity in the province, screening capacity, and hospitalization and vaccination rates.
“We’ve learned in Nova Scotia that a slow, cautious approach works, and that gets you going… we don’t want to lock in again. It would be the worst possible thing, ”said Dr Robert Strang, head of the province. medical officer of health.
The second phase will see the restaurants open for indoor dining, provided they can continue to maintain a six-foot distance between tables. Retail stores, gyms and fitness facilities will be able to operate at 50% capacity.
Outdoor gathering limits will increase to 25 people, as will sporting practices and artistic and cultural rehearsals.
The third phase, another two to four weeks later, would see these businesses extend their hours of operation. After that, probably around the end of July if the number of cases and hospitalizations remain low, these businesses could open their doors during normal business hours.
The province is considering a Canada Day target date for the potential reopening of the Atlantic bubble, but Strang said there was a lot of talk that will need to take place first.
Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick released their plans to reopen earlier this week.
Prince Edward Island hopes to open its borders to travelers from Atlantic Canada by June 27, while New Brunswick plans to open its borders to all Atlantic provinces except Nova Scotia on June 7.
1 new death, 40 new cases
Another person in Nova Scotia has died from COVID-19, making it the province’s 80th death since the start of the pandemic.
She was a woman in her fifties in the central health zone.
The province also reported 40 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, bringing the total number of active cases in the province to 585.
Twenty-nine new cases are in the central zone, five in the east zone, four in the north zone and two in the west zone.
Fifty-three Nova Scotians are hospitalized with the virus, including 18 in intensive care, according to a statement from the Department of Health.
A month ago, the number of new daily cases was steadily increasing as a third wave of COVID-19 gripped the province.
The number of new daily cases peaked at 227 on May 7.
Atlantic Canada Case Numbers
- New Brunswick reported nine new cases on Friday. The province has 139 active cases.
- Newfoundland and Labrador reported 14 new cases Thursday and 96 active cases.
- PEI reported two new cases on Friday. There are 12 active cases.