Social Groups of Ten Now Legal in NS
UPDATED WITH MORE GUIDELINES FOR CHURCHES
Nova Scotians may now gather in groups of ten as the province further relaxes the public health restrictions imposed to limit the coronavirus pandemic.
Premier Stephen McNeil made the announcement today during a press conference broadcast live on Six Rivers Radio.
For the last number of weeks, public gatherings limited groups to five or fewer, while at the same time insisting that people keep two metres between them.
Premier Stephen McNeil says, “This next step to allow people to gather in slightly larger groups is good for our mental health and well being.”
The new gathering limit of ten is effective immediately. Physical distancing of two metres or six feet is still required, except among members of the same household or family household bubble.
Outdoor weddings and funeral services will be allowed up to 15 people, excluding the officiants.
While churches are allowed to gather in groups of ten, they are not allowed to pass collection plates or communion elements. Dr. Strang also suggested no singing, as evidence suggests the practice causes a greater spread of air-born water droplets which may carry the coronavirus.
The gathering limit applies to things like social gatherings, arts and culture activities like theatre performances and dance recitals, faith gatherings, and sports and physical activity. It also applies to businesses whose main function is gatherings, such as theatres, concerts, festivals and sporting activities, and to businesses that are too small to ensure physical distancing.
Other steps being taken include:
- private campgrounds can open starting June 5 for all types of campers. They can only operate at 50 per cent capacity and must ensure public health protocols are followed including adequate distance between campsites
- provincial campgrounds will open to Nova Scotians on June 15, with the reservation line opening June 8. They will operate at a reduced capacity to ensure a minimum of 20 feet between individual campsites
- pools can start maintenance work to prepare for reopening, likely in time for summer
- sleepover camps are not permitted this year
The chief medical officer says, “As we create more opportunities for Nova Scotians to regain some normalcy in their lives, it’s important that we all continue to take protective measures like good hand hygiene, cough etiquette, and staying home if you’re sick.” Dr. Robert Strang added, “It’s also important for people to think about their own health and circumstances in order to make good decisions about the activities they choose to do.”
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