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Manitoba implementing gathering size restrictions to limit the spread of COVID-19

The Manitoba government is introducing new public health orders as COVID-19 cases continue to rise in the province.

WINNIPEG -- The Manitoba government is introducing new public health orders as COVID-19 cases continue to rise in the province.

Premier Brian Pallister, along with Dr. Brent Roussin, the chief provincial public health officer, announced the orders Monday afternoon.

Roussin said the orders will come into effect on Wednesday and they include:

  • Not allowing visitors at people's homes – indoors or outdoors; an exception will be made for people living alone, allowing them to have one designated visitor.
  • Indoor gatherings are not allowed, and outdoor gatherings will be limited to 10 people in public spaces;
  • Faith-based gatherings will be limited to 25 per cent capacity or 10 people, whichever is lower. Mask wearing will be required;
  • Eating on patios will be limited to groups of four with no household restrictions and food courts in malls will be closed;
  • Gyms and fitness centres will be limited to 25 per cent capacity;
  • Spectators at outdoor sports and recreation facilities will be limited to one parent per participant;
  • Dance, theatre, and music schools are limited to 25 per cent capacity, but the orders will limit sites to 10 people with one parent;
  • Retail stores will be set at 25 per cent capacity or 250 people whichever is lower. Malls will be limited to 25 per cent capacity;
  • Day camps will only be allowed to have 10 kids inside and outside; and
  • Personal service businesses will stay at 50 per cent capacity, but appointments will be required.

Pallister said the measures will be in place for four weeks, noting it will stretch past the May long weekend.

"We need Manitobans to understand how critical we are right now in a race between vaccinations and the variants of concern," said Roussin.

He noted the best way to limit the spread is staying home as much as possible and when you do need to leave, wear a mask and be physically distant.

"The vaccine is giving us that optimistic look to the future, but we are not there yet."

Roussin said during the four weeks that the health orders are in place, the province is expected to vaccinate more than 300,000 people.

"So if we all do our part, this could very well be our last strict orders." 

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