Intra-Provincial Travel Discouraged but Not Restricted
In a news conference last week, Premier Horgan and Dr. Henry answered a reporter's questions regarding intra-provincial travel. Here is the transcript from that exchange that might answer questions about welcoming people from other province's to British Columbia.
: Premier Horgan, what is your message to people in other parts of Canada who may want to travel to BC now that our province is entering phase three? Are people from other provinces being welcomed in BC now?
: Dr. Henry and I have never said that we were going to restrict the mobility rights of Canadians. We have always said, particularly with respect to people from Yukon and Alberta, our immediate neighbours, that if you did not need to be coming to British Columbia, perhaps you should stay at home.
Now that we are moving into phase three, our message to them would be slightly amended, to say certainly, if you are coming to British Columbia, be mindful of what British Columbians have done together to get us to a position where we can welcome people from other parts of the country.
Our focus right now, of course, is on making sure British Columbians can travel freely and enjoy British Columbia. But there are many border towns with Alberta. Indeed, Dr. Henry and I were talking about the Yukon opening up to British Columbians. Although there was a special amendment between the two jurisdictions, because places like Atlin, for example, depend on services in Whitehorse.
Although British Columbia residents spent much of their time in Yukon Territory, so the premier of Yukon and I have been working closely to make sure that those connections can be intact during this period.
To all those Albertans who have properties in British Columbia and spend much of their time in British Columbia, I am certain that they'll be coming for the summer and we welcome them, also being mindful that we hope they will abide by the guidance of their neighbours on how to act and comport themselves while they are here, for their safety and the safety of British Columbians.
As a follow-up to that, maybe Dr. Henry, if there is an unwelcome flood of tourists from other provinces or if there is a sign that there becomes COVID cases that could be traced to other provinces, is there any scenario in which BC would bring in measures that could restrict other Canadian visitors?
We, from the very beginning, have not done that, for very important reasons. We have lots of reasons why people go back and forth particularly to Alberta and the Yukon, for example. We have, across the country as well, worked together to manage this pandemic, although each of us has experienced something slightly different. So I don't see us ever putting in restrictions. We haven't so far.
But, we want people to have their travel manners on when they come here -- make sure that they are doing what we have been doing, so that we can all stay safe in our communities here in BC and when people are going back and forth to their communities and other provinces in Canada.
Source: Premier Horgan and Dr. Henry answer the question about Canadians travelling to BC from about 30:30 to 33:15 in the video linked below: