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EPS asks for public's support by adhering to Health Act orders

FINES BETWEEN $1,000 AND $500,000 CAN BE ISSUED 

For Immediate Release: 02-Apr-2020 @ 2:27 PM
MRU #: 20R039

Communication and education over enforcement will be the primary objective for EPS members responding to situations involving non-compliance of the Public Health Act orders recently legislated to slow the spread of COVID-19 throughout Edmonton.

The fundamental focus is for all citizens to adhere to compliance within the Orders. An enforcement mechanism is now at our disposal for those who demonstrate utter disregard to follow the Orders that have been established in the interests of public safety,” says Supt. Dean Hilton, of the EPS Pandemic Command. “We are experiencing a critical health situation that requires everyone’s compliance versus a necessity to levy fines to businesses or individuals during this challenging time. 

“We’ve been called upon by the Premier and the Chief Medical officer to enforce these orders to ensure that all Edmontonians are strictly adhering to the rules to slow the spread of this dangerous virus.”

It is an offence under the Public Health Act to not comply with Orders and may result in a fine ranging from $1,000 to $500,000, depending on the circumstances. These orders will be enforced by police and peace officers, immediately.

Public complaints about non-compliance with any of the Medical Officer of Health’s orders should be made online at: https://ephisahs.microsoftcrmportals.com/create-case/, and not to 911, which is for emergency situations only. This will allow the proper response and ensure the efficient use of all resources.

Some of the main violations that police, peace and bylaw officers can be called upon to enforce include the following:

·       Gatherings of more than 15 people are prohibited – indoors or outdoors, including places of worship, weddings, funerals, staff meetings, etc. that would be in person.

·       Everyone must be two metres away from every other person (obviously parents of small children can be as close as they need to be to ensure their safety, etc.) in public, and people who aren’t living in the same household must be two metres away from each other in private spaces.

·       Exception: Carpooling in vehicles with two or more people does not contravene any public health order that is currently in place.

·       Schools and post-secondary institutions are closed to in-person classes.

·       Most daycare facilities are closed – exceptions for group family child care, approved family day homes, and certain facilities for children of essential service employees.

·       Everyone is prohibited from attending recreational and entertainment facilities as well as bars and nightclubs where minors are prohibited by law.

·       Businesses that offer non-essential health services (i.e. those that would not endanger the person’s life, health, or safety if not immediately provided), wellness services, and any retail stores are prohibited from offering or providing services.

·       Exception – essential services (those crucial for preserving life, health, public safety, and basic societal functioning), take-out or delivery services from food serving facilities (including delivery of liquor by businesses with liquor licenses).

·       Businesses that are allowed to be open must prevent the risk of transmission to co-workers and members of the public, maintain high levels of hygiene, and have a rapid response plan ready if anyone develops symptoms.

·       Visitors are generally prohibited from attending health-care facilities, with several specific exceptions.

·       Isolation – People who have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or exhibit any of its symptoms (unless they have tested negative and have no known exposure) must remain in their homes – no attending work, school, social events, or other gatherings and not using public transportation – and stay two metres away from all people in their home at all times, for a minimum of 10 days or later if their symptoms persist.

·       If police observe someone with COVID-19 symptoms outside of that person’s home police can investigate and enforce this isolation requirement.

·       Quarantine – anyone who returned from international travel or had close contact with a person who has COVID-19 must remain in their place of residence – not attending work, school, social events, or other gatherings, and using public transportation – for at least 14 days.  During this time they must monitor themselves for symptoms. .  If the quarantined person develops symptoms, they then become in isolation, and the first day of their symptoms starts the first day of their minimum 10-day isolation period.  

 For a full description of these orders, visit Alberta Government’s website for updates at www.alberta.ca.   

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Please contact Scott Pattison at (780) 421-3553 for more information.

"Dedicated to Protect, Proud to Serve"