The Yukon government has again extended its state of emergency, saying it’s necessary to be able to respond to the evolving COVID-19 pandemic.
Officials did not say how long the extension would be. The last 90-day extension was announced in June and was set to expire on Thursday.
Streicker said the state of emergency allows the government to enforce self-isolation requirements and border declarations, among other measures meant to reduce risk.
“We are not out of the woods yet,” Streicker said.
He also said that Yukon’s Civil Emergency Measures Act (CEMA) is outdated, meaning that many measures required ministerial orders in order to be enacted.
“As we’ve worked through it with the various departments, we can see that [CEMA] didn’t really anticipate a pandemic like COVID[-19]. So there’s definitely things that need to be improved in the legislation,” he said.
Travel bubble with B.C. to remain in place
Chief Medical Officer Brendan Hanley also said Wednesday that the state of emergency must remain in place, “at least for the next little while.”
In B.C., health officials on Tuesday announced 429 new cases of COVID-19 recorded in the province over the long weekend, bringing the total to 6,591.
A number of exposure events at nightlife venues caused that province to amend public health orders on Tuesday, representing the first time B.C. has significantly pulled back on steps that had been taken to reopen the province since May.
And Ontario on Tuesday paused its reopening plan in response to rising case numbers.
Still, Hanley said despite the case numbers elsewhere, he is not reconsidering Yukon’s travel bubble with B.C. and the other territories. Nor is he considering extending the bubble to include other jurisdictions, he said.
“It is best to stay where we are,” he said.
With files from Michelle Ghoussoub
Related stories from around the North:
Denmark: Faroe Islands updates COVID-19 guidelines for travellers, Eye on the Arctic
Greenland: Greenland approves revised COVID-19 strategy, Eye on the Arctic
Iceland: Iceland relaxes COVID-19 restrictions for the arts, allows rehearsals to resume, Eye on the Arctic
Russia: Russia’s Murmansk region counts more COVID-19 cases than neighboring Norway or Finland, The Independent Barents Observer
Sweden: Swedish authorities tasked with preparing for second coronavirus wave, Radio Sweden
United States: Indigenous communities in Alaska harder hit by COVID-19, The Associated Press