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COVID-19 News & Updates

Read the latest provincial, federal and public health authority news and local updates related to COVID-19.

Last updated: April 5, 2020 at 5:26pm

 

April 5, 2020

The Government of Canada has announced new measures for ferries and commercial passenger vessels with 12+ passengers that will come into effect April 6, 2020. These new measures include prohibiting commercial marine vessels from engaging in non-essential activities, restrictions on Canadian cruise ships and reductions in passengers allowed on ferries. In addition, health screening guidelines will be issued to ferry operators to better protect employees and passengers.

Read the full release

April 4, 2020

Provincial COVID-19 Strategic Research Advisory Committee

The Provincial goverment has announced the formation of the new COVID-19 Strategic Research Advisory Committee, which will facilitate research efforts across the province. 

Read the full statement

April 3, 2020

Virtual Council Meetings

In an effort to maximize social distancing, Surrey City Council meetings will now be conducted virtually. Learn more about our upcoming Virtual Council Meetings, kicking off on Monday, April 6, 2020 at 7pm. The meeting will also be live-streamed on our website.

April 2, 2020

Surrey Launches Public Campaign to Encourage Physical Distancing Commitment

The City of Surrey is encouraging residents to not let down their guard and maintain the practice of physical distancing to fight the spread of COVID-19. The message is clear: stay the course as we battle to flatten the curve.

The Surrey Flattens the Curve campaign calls on residents to share their personal commitment in limiting the spread of COVID-19, while rallying others to join the fight. This public campaign includes a social media badge and banner enabling residents to share their pledge with family and friends, as well as digital billboard ads, local transit shelter ads and digital promotion of the campaign hashtag, #SurreyFlattenstheCurve.  The campaign emphasises the three main actions needed to stop the spread of COVID-19.  

Read the full release

April 1, 2020

Government Announces Details of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy to Help Businesses Keep Canadians in their jobs

To help Canadians and businesses get through these tough economic times, the Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, announced that the Government is proposing to introduce a wage subsidy of 75 per cent for qualifying businesses, for up to 3 months, retroactive to March 15, 2020. Learn More

Province supporting people with relief on power bills during COVID-19

The Government of British Columbia and BC Hydro are helping residents and business owners impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. BC Hydro will offer new, targeted bill relief to provide immediate help to those most in need. Residential customers who have lost their jobs or are unable to work as a result of COVID-19 will receive a credit to help cover the cost of their electricity bills. Small businesses that have been forced to close due to COVID-19 will have their power bills forgiven for three months. Learn More

March 31, 2020

Joint statement on Province of BC's COVID-19 response, latest updates

Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, BC's provincial health officer, issued a joint statement regarding updates on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) response in British Columbia.

The update included news on child care for essential service workers. 

Read the full release.

March 30, 2020

Positive Results Seen by Surrey COVID-19 Compliance and Enforcement Team

Surrey Bylaws and Surrey RCMP have launched the COVID-19 Compliance and Enforcement Team to ensure all Surrey residents and business owners understand their personal obligations to stop the spread of COVID-19. The COVID-19 Compliance & Enforcement Team comprises of law enforcement officers made up of members of the Surrey Bylaw Services and Surrey RCMP. The team proactively conducts outreach to Surrey businesses, faith-based locations, event locations, and recovery homes to inform, educate and prevent contraventions of public health safety orders. The team will be proactively patrolling in popular areas where people continue to congregate such as parks and beaches in Surrey.

Read the full release.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update from Mayor Doug McCallum

"When we are outside enjoying the fresh air at our parks and beaches or when we are at the grocery store or pharmacy, I am encouraged to see so many people obeying the rules of social distancing. It is clear that this message is getting through and as long as we continue to practice social distancing, we will continue to make an impact in our collective fight against the spread of COVID-19.

That is why it is so vital that we do not let our guard down and slip back to our old ways. As we enter this critical juncture to “flatten the curve,” it is critical that we maintain our discipline in social distancing. Don’t gather in groups larger than 10, stay home as much as you can, and when you are outside, take a wide and safe path around others for your safety and theirs. With everyone doing their part, we can and will get through this challenging time."

– Mayor Doug McCallum

Joint statement on Province of BC's COVID-19 response, latest updates

Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Bonnie Henry, BC's provincial health officer, issued a joint statement regarding updates on the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) response in British Columbia.

The update included news on

  • 19 major hospitals being designated as primary COVID-19 facilities,
  • suspending pay parking for the patients, staff and visitors at all health authority owned and operated sites, effective April 1 until further notice,
  • the new Keep Learning website to give families additional support and provide guidance on how to incorporate learning into their everyday activities.

Read the full release.

March 29, 2020

  • The federal government announced new funding to help address the needs of those experiencing homelessness as well as special funding for women’s shelters, including facilities in Indigenous communities, to help with their capacity to manage or prevent an outbreak.
  • Funding is also available to support for counselling services to children and youth via Kids Help Phone.
  • Additional funding is also being channeled through the United Way Canada for local organizations to support practical services to Canadian seniors. Learn More
  • The Province announced a $3-million emergency grant from the Community Gaming Grants program to Food Banks British Columbia. Surrey’s Food Bank remains open and continues to meet the challenges of COVID-19 locally and will receive this provincial funding. Learn More

March 28, 2020

  • Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s provincial health officer, has ordered all episodic vending markets (also known as “farmers’ markets” or “community markets”) to only allow vendors to serve food at these events. Vendors of all other merchandise are prohibited at these events until further notice. Learn More
  • The Government of Canada is now requiring all air operators to conduct a health check of travellers before they board a flight within Canada or departing from Canada, based on guidance from the Public Health Agency of Canada. Air operators can refuse boarding to a passenger that presents COVID-19 symptoms. Learn More

March 27, 2020

  • Effective immediately, Surrey City Hall will be open to the public by appointment only. Learn More.
  • Effective Monday, March 30, garbage, organics and recycling must be contained within carts, and the Large Item Pick Up Program will be suspended until further notice. Any large item scheduled for pickup on or after this date will be rescheduled for pickup at a later date. Read the full media release for more details.

March 26, 2020

COVID-19 Compliance and Enforcement Team

City Bylaw Services and the Surrey RCMP have established a joint COVID-19 Compliance and Enforcement Team to respond to public complaints received where individuals are not respecting social distancing practices and the instructions and/or recommendations provided by the Provincial Medical Health Officer. The Team will disperse gatherings of more than 50 people through education, however, municipal fines or other penalties may be enforced against non compliant persons or businesses. The Team's primary focus is on:

  • Businesses, banquet halls, and faith-based locations;
  • Large gatherings at any place of (private) business;
  • Large gatherings on residential properties; and
  • Playgrounds and any gatherings of more than 50 people on any City-owned property.

Residents wishing to report a violation to a public health order must contact the City of Surrey Bylaw Call Centre at 604-591-4370 or the RCMP Non Emergency Line at 604-599-0502 after hours and weekends.

Provincial Updates

  • The Province is funding the expansion of bc211, a provincewide information and referral service, to match seniors with volunteers. Call 2-1-1 if you are a senior and would like to be linked with a volunteer. Also call 2-1-1 if you would like to volunteer to provide assistance to a senior in your community. Learn more.
  • Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General, announced steps to support COVID-19 response, including steps affecting Supply Chain, Protecting Consumers, Enforcement, Travel, BC's Most Vulnerable, and Coordination of local governments. See today’s Provincial news release for full details.

March 25, 2020 Updates

90-day Extension for Annual Flat Water and Sewer Payment

Effective March 25, the City of Surrey's Annual Flat Water and Sewer payment will be extended by 90 days. The grace period has been endorsed by City Council and the payment is now due July 2, 2020. There has been no change to the payment schedule for those on metered billing.

Read the full media release

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update from Mayor Doug McCallum

"COVID-19 can and will be stopped, and the fight begins and ends with each of us.

"This battle is for the health of our communities, our neighborhoods, our older population that is the most vulnerable, our loved ones, our families and our individual self."

Read the full statement from Mayor Doug McCallum

March 24, 2020 Updates

  • The Provincial government has launched the COVID-19 BC Support App & Self-Assessment Tool to provide users with the latest updates, trusted resources, and alerts.

  • Some recycling depots are suspending service or reducing service hours. Before heading to your local depot, please confirm with them that they are open and that their hours have not changed. See Recycle BC’s full advisory for more information.

March 23, 2020 Updates

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update from Mayor Doug McCallum - March 23

"The battle against COVID-19 is in a critical phase. I want to personally thank and commend the citizens of Surrey who have been doing their part. Over the last few days, I have personally observed that the vast majority of our citizens are taking personal responsibility by staying home or when outside, strictly adhering to social distancing measures." - Mayor McCallum

Read the full Mayor's Statement

Effective immediately, City playgrounds, city skateparks, city sports courts for team sports such as basketball, lacrosse/ball hockey are closed. All City of Surrey playing fields are closed for organized sports. Provincial sport organizations, i.e. BC Soccer, BC Football, BC Baseball, BC Softball and BC Cricket have suspended all play. Casual use of sports fields and open green space in our parks can take place within the parameters of social distancing.

COVID-19 Action Plan: Province Announces First steps to Support People, Businesses

British Columbians affected by the COVID-19 pandemic will benefit from $5 billion in income supports, tax relief and direct funding for people, businesses and services. The COVID-19 Action Plan is the provincial government’s first step to provide relief to people and businesses in British Columbia. The plan dedicates $2.8 billion to help people and fund the services they need to weather the crisis; $2.2 billion will provide relief to businesses and help them recover after the outbreak.

Read the Province's full press release

March 22, 2020 Updates

  • Prime Minister Justin Trudeau today announced that the Government House Leader has asked the Speaker of the House of Commons to recall the House in order to introduce urgent economic measures, as part of Canada’s $82 billion response to support workers and businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. The House is expected to meet on Tuesday, March 24, at 12 pm eastern time. Learn more
     
  • The Province and Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, directed employers at construction sites to take all necessary precautions to minimize the risks of COVID-19 transmission and illness to themselves and their employees. Learn more

March 21, 2020 Updates

  • Until further notice, the Province has ordered the closure of personal service establishments – like barbershops, salons, nail estheticians, health spas, massage parlours, tattoo shops and others. Learn more
     
  • As British Columbians work to reduce the spread of the coronavirus, the Province is taking swift action to protect vulnerable people, including those experiencing homelessness, in communities around British Columbia. Initial actions include a ban on evictions for non-payment of rent in BC Housing-funded buildings. Learn more

March 20, 2020 Updates

  • Planning & Development Call Centre: As of 8:30am on March 20, Planning & Development has now implemented a call centre, allowing residents and customers to avoid visiting City Hall. All Planning & Development inquiries will be accepted and dealt with on a first-come-first-serve basis (similar to the department’s Customer Service Counter’s regular process). Planning & Development Call Centre phone number: 604-591-4086

  • Digital Permit Intake: All Planning & Development permits will now be digitally accepted by email, through permitapplication@surrey.ca. All permit application processes will remain the same, apart from receiving the physical document copies.

    Applicants must submit all necessary documentations, similar to in-person permit application submissions. Once Planning & Development staff receive an emailed permit application, the attached documents will be printed and saved digitally. Regular permit intake procedures will then continue as usual. Any permit application deficiencies will be communicated by email.

    Planning & Development has the right to request hard copy permit application submissions when appropriate. While we intend on lessening in-person interactions and avoiding you from visiting City Hall, hard copies may be necessary depending on the scope of work and project size. Should this be the case, we will let you know after you have attempted to submit your application by email.

  • Effective immediately, BC restaurants can only offer take-out and/or delivery services. This order was announced March 20 by our Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry to enforce social distancing and help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Read the Joint Statement on Province of British Columbia's COVID-19 response, latest updates.

March 19, 2020 Updates

Mayor McCallum provided an update on City Services and Operations. Highlights include:

  • Starting Friday, March 20, a call centre for planning, development and building inquiries and to make appointments that would normally take place at City Hall will be in operation. Call 604-591-4086 for assistance.
  • Starting Monday, March 23, all city-run day camps will be shut down. Also, starting Monday, the two daycares located at civic facilities will be shut down to the public in order to prioritize space for health workers, first responders and essential service workers.
  • City staff have also been taking stock of large format industrial space that could potentially be used to set up temporary hospitals, or as space for production lines to manufacture essential medical equipment, or for warehousing of essential resources.
  • Regarding property taxes, we are actively working with the Province on what can be done on this front and we will update you as soon as we can.

Read the full update

March 18, 2020 Updates

  • The British Columbia government has declared a provincial state of emergency to support the provincewide response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
  • Declaring a state of emergency allows the Province, through the minister, to implement any provincial emergency measures required with access to land and human resource assets that may be necessary to prevent, respond to or alleviate the effects of an emergency. Read the province's press release for more information.

March 17, 2020 Updates

  • Classes at all K-12 schools in BC are suspended until further notice to prevent the spread of COVID-19. During this time, the Province of British Columbia has directed schools to develop a plan for continued learning for their students.
  • Effective immediately, businesses with liquor primary licences, such as bars, pubs and night clubs, must close as they are unable to adequately meet the requirements of social distancing. Restaurants and cafes that cannot maintain social distancing of one to two meters between patrons will need to move to take-out and delivery models.

March 16, 2020 updates

The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, announced additional actions being taken in response to COVID-19 to limit its spread and to provide support to Canadian travellers. The Prime Minister also strongly urged Canadians to follow the recommendations that:

  • All Canadians avoid non-essential travel outside the country until further notice.
  • Canadian travellers return to Canada via commercial means while they remain available.
  • All travellers to Canada self-isolate for 14 days upon entry, with exceptions for workers who are essential to the movement of goods and people.

Additionally, new air travel regulations are now in place:

  • International flights will only be permitted to Toronto Pearson International Airport, Vancouver International Airport, Montréal-Trudeau International Airport, and Calgary International Airport.
  • Foreign nationals are not permitted. Moving forward, only air crews, travellers arriving in Canada in transit to a third country, Canadian permanent residents, diplomats, or immediate family members of Canadian citizens will be permitted to land by air in Canada.

View the full press release from the Prime Minister.