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Posted: June 26, 2020

Please stay respectful and responsible urges DOI Mayor

District of Invermere Mayor Allen Miller June 25 provided another message to the community via social media around the COVID-19 pandemic and British Columbia entering Phase 3 of its recovery plan.

Here is the text of his message.

I am pleased to announce some rather good news. On Wednesday, June 24, British Columbia’s Premier John Horgan, accompanied by Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, announced that the province of British Columbia is ready to transition gradually into Phase 3, further easing restrictions set in place to control COVID-19. This phase includes the safe and respectful return of travel and tourism within the province.

As we continue to take steps forward as a province and a community, we all need to remain vigilant and not get complacent. This means respecting rules in place and taking responsibility for our own actions. We do not want to put others at risk.

This also applies to our visitors. We welcome you but you are also responsible for helping to keep our community safe, which is our top priority. We welcome those who recognize and respect that. It is very important that we all consider the situation with COVID-19 and continue to be kind to people.

We need to be respectful and think twice about judging someone based on where their vehicle is registered. Our community members are welcoming, and our community will not be represented by individuals who are not. It is time to end tensions and show our visitors a warm welcome back to our beautiful valley!

Summer and warmer weather is here. Residents and visitors must practise physical distancing and avoid crowding when visiting Kinsmen Beach, James Chabot Beach and all of the other public spaces that we all love to enjoy. It is very important that we do not get caught in the mentality that the pandemic is over. B.C. has extended the state of emergency for another two weeks because the pandemic is not over. On the news, we have all seen overcrowded beaches in areas such as Florida and we have heard the numbers of cases are continuing to rise around the world.

I understand the desire to be outside but we cannot have groups of people gathering on the beach while not observing safe social (physical) distancing guidelines. We are so fortunate that we have the opportunity to go out and enjoy our public spaces. This is a relief for many during these stressful times, but we all must be sensible. As a municipality we are asking all of our community members and visitors to continue to follow the health and safety guidelines that are set in place to keep us all safe. If individuals are not following the advice they are being given, then these spaces can be shut down entirely. Trust me when I say, we do not want to do this. We all must keep doing our part as we continue moving forward. We must stay safe to keep our public spaces open.

Physical distancing starts right in the parking lot. If you can’t practice social distancing safely, you will need to make a different plan and find an alternative location to go. Being in close contact with others poses the most risk for COVID-19 infection.

Please stay home if you are sick, maintain a physical distance of six feet from others, consider wearing a cloth mask especially when six feet can’t be kept between you and others and wash your hands often.

Organized gatherings with more than 50 people are still banned.

Let’s continue to act responsibly and let’s continue to move forward!

Lead image: Social distancing before it was cool on the diving dock at Invermere’s Kinsmen Beach. e-KNOW file photo


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