A view from the water shows the Northern Haida Gwaii Hospital and Health Centre. (Haida Gwaii Observer/File photo)

Non-resident travel to Haida Gwaii shut down amid COVID outbreak

Province will enforce travel restrictions from islands and mainland

The province has restricted non-residents from travelling to Haida Gwaii to help contain a COVID-19 outbreak that has infected 20 islanders to date.

Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth made the announcement today (July 30) under the state of provincial emergency, saying the province will maintain essential goods and services to the archipelago.

“The Province, Northern Health and the First Nations Health Authority are working closely with the Haida Nation and local governments on Haida Gwaii to respond to this COVID-19 outbreak,” Farnworth said. “Our foremost concern is the health and safety of all residents of Haida Gwaii, and we’re working together to limit further spread of COVID-19.”

Provincial staff will be deployed to communities on the mainland and Haida Gwaii to enforce the travel restriction.

It’s believed the 20 cases are linked to residents who travelled off island.

READ MORE: COVID-19: No new cases on Haida Gwaii in past 24 hours

The province has prioritized testing for Haida Gwaii.

The province said its decision to restrict non-resident travel was made in collaboration with the Council of the Haida Nation, the band councils and all local governments.

Travel to and from the islands will be subject to the approval of the communities for limited reasons, including delivery of essential goods and supplies, medical appointments, urgent or emergency family matters, and for the provision of essential services as defined by the unified command structure comprised of the Council of the Haida Nation, village councils and local governments.

As of July 29, there were 13 cases that were still active and seven had recovered.

-with files from Karissa Gall

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

This Google Maps screenshot shows the Highway 97 intersection at Juniper Road that is being deactivated in South Quesnel. (Google Maps screenshot)
Juniper Road intersection being deactivated in South Quesnel

Traffic can no longer enter or exit Highway 97 at Juniper Road in a move to improve road safety

Carey and Angela Price announced the birth of their third child on Monday, named Lincoln. (Photo submitted)
Canadiens’ Carey Price, wife Angela, announce birth of baby boy Lincoln

Prior to Monday’s announcement, Carey and Angela had two daughters: Liv, 4, and Millie, 1

Williams Lake RCMP are hoping to speak with Amber Wuetz. (Photo submitted)
Williams Lake RCMP concerned for missing woman’s well-being

Amber Wuetz was last seen in Williams Lake

Angel Emile, 17, has not been seen since Wednesday, Oct 21. (Photo submitted)
Young Indigenous woman reported missing from Williams Lake

Angel Emile has not been heard from since last week

NDP Leader John Horgan celebrates his election win in the British Columbia provincial election in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Saturday, Oct. 24, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Horgan celebrates projected majority NDP government, but no deadline for $1,000 deposit

Premier-elect says majority government will allow him to tackle issues across all of B.C.

FILE – B.C. Lions and Toronto Argonauts owner, Senator David Braley speaks after the CFL announced Vancouver will host the 2014 Grey Cup championship football game during a news conference in Vancouver, B.C., on Friday March 8, 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
BC Lions owner David Braley dead at 79

Braley had bought the CFL team prior to 1997 season

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

NDP Leader John Horgan speaks with the owner of a barber shop while campaigning in Pitt Meadows, B.C., on Friday, Oct. 16, 2020. Campaigning was restricted by the coronavirus pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Horgan’s B.C. majority came with historically low voter turnout

Barely half of eligible voters cast ballots in snap election

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

FILE – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets Premier John Horgan during a press conference at the BC Transit corporate office following an announcement about new investments to improve transit for citizens in the province while in Victoria on Thursday, July 18, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Trudeau congratulates Horgan on NDP’s election victory in British Columbia

Final count won’t be available for three weeks due to the record number of 525,000 ballots cast by mail

Comedic actor Seth Rogen, right, and business partner Evan Goldberg pose in this undated handout photo. When actor Seth Rogen was growing up and smoking cannabis in Vancouver, he recalls there was a constant cloud of shame around the substance that still lingers. Rogen is determined to change that. (Maarten de Boer ohoto)
Seth Rogen talks about fighting cannabis stigma, why pot should be as accepted as beer

‘I smoke weed all day and every day and have for 20 years’

Provincial Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau speaks at Provincial Green Party headquarters at the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe in Victoria. (Arnold Lim / Black Press)
VIDEO: Furstenau leads BC Greens to win first riding outside of Vancouver Island

Sonia Furstenau became leader of BC Greens one week before snap election was called

Most Read