City askes Edmontonians to redouble their efforts to protect each other
Interim City Manager Adam Laughlin is encouraging Edmontonians to be more vigilant in protecting themselves and others after Alberta Health Services announced COVID-19 numbers have increased dramatically in the Edmonton area.
“With Thanksgiving and Halloween coming up we all want to get together with our families to celebrate,” said Laughlin. “But we need to do that safely. The dramatic increase in case numbers is deeply concerning and we need all Edmontonians to take more precautions to limit the risk of case numbers growing even more.”
Laughlin made the statements following a media conference where Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, announced that Edmonton was on an enhanced relaunch status and asked area residents to observe new voluntary recommendations:
- Limit their social and family gatherings to no more than 15 people.
- Wear non-medical masks in all indoor work settings, except when alone in workspaces such as offices or cubicles where you can be safely distanced from others or an appropriate barrier is in place.
- Limit their number of cohorts to no more than three (including a core/household cohort, a school/work cohort, and one additional sport, social or other cohort).
The City of Edmonton has an existing face covering bylaw in effect for publicly accessible places and city residents are asked to observe that bylaw while continuing to wash their hands regularly, observe physical distancing guidelines and limit the cohort of people they spend time with.
“The rising number of COVID-19 cases in Edmonton and surrounding areas is concerning. Public health guidelines including physical distancing, staying home when sick, hand hygiene and masking are important tools to limit the spread of the virus in our communities,” said Dr. Chris Sikora, Medical Officer of Health, Edmonton Zone, Alberta Health Services.
“The City of Edmonton’s Masks & Face Coverings Bylaw is an important measure that complements other prevention guidelines. Without adherence to those measures, it is likely our rates of COVID-19 would be even higher,” Dr. Sikora, continued.
Laughlin said the City will be looking at Dr. Hinshaw’s advice and may consider further City of Edmonton actions or measures and will discuss options at the next Emergency Advisory Committee of City Council on October 15.
“Edmontonians did so well in the first half of this year to keep our COVID numbers down,” said Laughlin, “but we’ve become a bit complacent. We are prepared to put further measures in place to contain the spread of the virus and help to protect the people of Edmonton”
Alberta Health Services will be continuing inspections of public-serving businesses to ensure that existing guidance is being followed. City Enforcement Officers will be increasing their inspections and deploying to shopping centres and public spaces in high-outbreak and AHS watch locations.
The City will continue to support vulnerable Edmontonians and those most at-risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19 to minimize risk of exposure with new bridge housing and temporary pandemic lodgings, with more details to be announced soon.For more information:edmonton.ca/masks