Alberta Set to Introduce Stricter Measures

CALGARY — Alberta has introduced new province-wide restrictions in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19.

“Alberta has sought to protect both lives and livelihoods from the beginning of the pandemic. The recent surge in COVID-19 hospitalizations will threaten our health-care system and the lives of many vulnerable Albertans unless further action is taken now,” says Premier Jason Kenney. “With the promise of a vaccine early in 2021, we can see the end of this terrible time. But all Albertans must take this more seriously than ever by staying home whenever possible and following these new measures.”

Announced on December 8, mandatory measures on social gatherings and masking have taken effect immediately. This includes a ban on all indoor and outdoor social gatherings (both public and private) and the province-wide expansion of the mandatory indoor public-masking requirement.

Effective December 13, additional restrictions will come into effect, including business closures and restrictions on other services, retail businesses and attendance at places of worship. Retail services will be required to reduce customer capacity to 15 per cent of fire-code occupancy, while restaurants, pubs, bars, lounges and cafés will be closed to in-person service.

Recreational facilities, including fitness centres, pools and spas; arts and entertainment businesses such as museums and galleries; and personal and wellness services, including hair and nail salons, will also be closed.

Starting December 13, mandatory work-from-home measures will also be implemented, except in the case that an employer determines the work requires a physical presence for operational effectiveness.

All existing guidance and legal orders remain in place, including closures previously required on November 27.

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