No plans to crack down on young people behaving badly amidst Okanagan outbreaks: Premier Horgan | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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No plans to crack down on young people behaving badly amidst Okanagan outbreaks: Premier Horgan

B.C. Premier John Horgan
Image Credit: SUBMITTED / Province of B.C.
July 23, 2020 - 11:04 AM

Premier John Horgan is asking young people to use common sense to help limit the spread of COVID-19 rather than punishing them for their penchant for partying.

“You need to do that in smaller groups,” Horgan said during a media briefing today, July 23. “You need to do that with people you know. This is not the time to make new friends. This is the time to reinforce the friendships you do have.”

If strangers try to join your party, he advised, stay away from them because they may have been in contact with thousands of other people.

Horgan said the province has the tools to enforce better behaviour but has chosen not to do that, in part, because that haven’t worked in other jurisdictions.

He was speaking in response to pictures he’s seen of young people partying in Kelowna. So far, 78 people have been confirmed to have COVID-19 that originated at private parties around Canada Day.

READ MORE: Browns Socialhouse in Kelowna possible COVID-19 exposure site

The premier said he understood how young people want to socialize, but noted more and more people must now stay at home and self-isolate for two weeks because they may have been in contact with people with COVID-19.

“Young people are not immune,” he said. “Young people are not invincible.”

Horgan said he doesn’t believe in punishing people for personal behaviour, but the province does have power to impose restrictions on businesses and did that yesterday when provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced extra restrictions on night clubs and dance floors.

READ MORE: Nearly 1,000 British Columbians self isolating due to Kelowna COVID-19 exposure

He also pointed out that B.C. is averaging 30 new cases a day, which was not unexpected as travel and other restrictions were eased.

This compares to 116 new cases a day in Alberta and 829 in Washington state, which means B.C. is still in very good shape as it manages the pandemic so he’ll wait and see how things go before taking any further actions.


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