A gorgeous stretch of summer-like weather has hit the City of Vancouver, drawing residents out of their homes in droves to enjoy the sunshine and ocean breeze.
Normally, this kind of behaviour is to be expected when it’s 25 C, but some in the city are raising concerns about just how many people are congregating in popular outdoor areas right now amid the pandemic.
Global B.C. reports that groups of up to 20 people were spotted chilling together at hotspots such as David Lam Park and Kitsilano Beach on Saturday.
Photos from the latter location show little, if any, physical distancing among revelers — not like they could even stand two metres apart from others with so many people jammed into one space.
B.C.’s provincial health officer Bonnie Henry has been adamant since COVID-19 hit her province that it’s okay for healthy people to get outside for fresh air and exercise, so long as they follow social distancing recommendations.
With news that some parts of the Greater Vancouver Area are beginning to reopen park facilities, and plans announced for people in B.C. to start spending time again with their loved ones (in groups of up to six people), it seems as though some west coasters are jumping the gun a bit.
Henry spoke to the issue on Saturday during a press conference, noting that while residents are welcome to visit beaches, they shouldn’t be congregating in large groups.
“I think most people are doing the right thing,” she said of those getting out to enjoy the weather en masse. “What we see is a visible minority. But because they’re outside we do see them.”
Henry asked all B.C. residents to continue following public health guidelines, which include physical distancing recommendations, until the pandemic is safely under control — which it isn’t yet, I’m sad to say.