August 26, 2021

Dear ABLE BC Members and Industry Colleagues,

Here’s what you’ll find inside today’s update:

  • Reminder: masks mandatory in all indoor public spaces effective August 25, 2021
  • Proof of Vaccination requirement coming September 13
  • Reminder: Central Okanagan and Interior Health restrictions
  • Recording Available: ABLE BC’s August 2021 Industry Update
  • Ministry of Health Guidance for Food and Liquor Serving Premises
  • Reminder: Have your say on BC’s permanent paid sick leave
  • Federal election set for September 20, 2021
  • Staffing issues: share your thoughts
  • Free webinar on September 1: Lead generation and marketing tips for reopening
  • Leveraging Email Marketing
  • Compensation and Retention Strategies
  • BC Hotel Association: Vancouver Island Live Industry Update Series
  • Propel: Federally-funded Student Work Placement Program
  • Funding for Business Strategy or Research Projects Available!

Find all past COVID-19 updates here.

Reminder: masks mandatory in all indoor public spaces effective August 25, 2021

Effective August 25, 2021, masks are now mandatory in all indoor public spaces. 
The new order from the Provincial Health Officer requires people 12 and older to wear masks in indoor public settings, regardless of vaccination status. 

A copy of the order is still not available but it will be posted here

These indoor public settings include: 

  • malls, shopping centres, coffee shops and retail and grocery stores
  • liquor and drug stores
  • airports, city halls, libraries, community and recreation centres
  • restaurants, pubs and bars (unless seated)
  • on public transportation, in a taxi or ride-sharing vehicle
  • areas of office buildings where services to the public are provided
  • common areas of sport and fitness centres when not engaged in physical activity
  • common areas of post-secondary institutions and non-profit organizations
  • inside schools for all K-12 staff, visitors and students in grades 4-12

It is our understanding this mandate also applies to your staff but we are waiting on confirmation from the PHO.

This temporary order will be reassessed as the BC vaccine card requirement is fully implemented in certain social and recreational settings, as announced on August 23.

Download a free ‘masks required’ sign or purchase laminated signage in ABLE BC’s online store.

For the purposes of this order, a mask or face covering is defined as a medical or non-medical mask that covers the nose and mouth. Face shields are not a substitute for a mask, as there is an opening below the mouth.

People who cannot wear a mask or who cannot put on or remove a mask without the assistance of others are exempt. A person may not be able to wear a mask for a psychological, behavioural or health condition, or due to a physical, cognitive or mental impairment.

Masks may be removed temporarily in indoor public places to identify the individual wearing the mask, to consume food or beverage at a location designated for this purpose, while participating in a sport or fitness activity in a sport facility or while receiving a personal or health service that requires the mask to be removed.

For more information, please read the provincial government news release. The new public order will be posted here.

Download a free ‘masks required’ sign or purchase laminated signage in ABLE BC’s online store.

Proof of Vaccination requirement coming September 13

On August 24, Premier John Horgan, Health Minister Adrian Dix, and Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry announced preliminary details of a Proof of Vaccination Requirement for British Columbia. Beginning September 13, British Columbians will be required to demonstrate a BC Vaccine Card to access certain settings and businesses.

A new order from the provincial health officer will require individuals to provide proof of vaccination to access a broad range of social, recreational, and discretionary events and businesses throughout the province. 

As of September 13, one dose of vaccine will be required for entry to these settings. By October 24, entry to these settings will require people to be fully vaccinated at least seven days after receiving both doses. To enter certain spaces, including indoor ticketed sporting events, indoor and patio dining in restaurants, fitness centres, casinos and indoor organized events, like conferences and weddings, people aged 12 and older will be required to show their proof of vaccination.

For more information, please read ABLE BC’s update.

Are staff required to be vaccinated? 

ABLE BC has not heard anything about requiring staff to be vaccinated, though we recommend that your house policy requires vaccinations. Here’s an article we published with some tips on how to do it, and why it’s more complicated than it seems.

We will update industry as soon as possible if anything changes about staff requirements. We imagine this situation will evolve between now and the September 13 roll out.

Comment from ABLE BC

We know this issue is complex and divisive. We’re working with government to get clarity on rollout and enforcement, as well as possible support for industry. ABLE BC will provide you with an update as soon as we can.

Reminder: Central Okanagan and Interior Health restrictions

On August 20, 2021, government announced additional restrictions for the Central Okanagan region, which were expanded to the entire Interior Health region:

  • Masks are mandatory in all indoor public spaces for people 12 years and older
  • Low-intensity indoor group exercise is permitted to a maximum of 10 people per high. High-intensity indoor group exercise is not permitted.
  • Outdoor group exercise is permitted up to 50 people per class.
  • Gatherings in vacation rentals are limited to five guests or one additional household
  • Indoor personal gatherings are limited to five guests or one other household
  • Outdoor personal gatherings are limited to no more than 50 people
  • Organized indoor gatherings are limited to 50 people and outdoor gatherings are limited to 100 people, both requiring a COVID-19 safety plan

The previous orders for central Okanagan food and liquor establishments remain in place:

  • Indoor and outdoor dining is allowed at food and liquor establishments for groups up to six people and liquor service must stop at 10:00 pm
  • Casinos may remain open with a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place
  • Nightclubs and bars are ordered to close unless they have full meal service

To clarify: the mask and gatherings and events orders were extended to the entire Interior Health region.

The restrictions for food and liquor establishments are only in place in the Central Okanagan (Peachland, West Kelowna, Kelowna, and Lake Country).

For more information, please read the public orders: 

If you have any other questions, please contact ABLE BC:

Recording Available: ABLE BC’s August 2021 Industry Update

This morning, we hosted our monthly Q&A with ABLE BC’s Executive Director Jeff Guignard. 
During the one-hour webinar, he provided an update on the state of BC’s liquor industry and answered your questions about vaccine passports, the mask mandate, current regulations, and more.

Watch the meeting recording here. Download the presentation slides here

For more information on ABLE BC’s Advocacy Work throughout the pandemic, download our COVID-19 Advocacy Report.

Ministry of Health Guidance for Food and Liquor Serving Premises

On August 16, the Ministry of Health released new guidance for Food and Liquor Serving Premises (based on the Provincial Health Officer’s Order to Food and Liquor Serving Premises, of June 30, 2021).

Download the guidance document.

Note that this guidance does not apply to Food and Liquor Serving Premises that are under orders by medical health officers (i.e., Central Okanagan). Check the Medical Health Officer Orders section of the Provincial Health Officer “Orders and notices” website for these orders.

This guidance provides information on ways to comply with the PHO Order on Food and Liquor Serving Premises, which applies to owners, operators and patrons of restaurants, coffee shops, cafes, cafeterias and food primary and liquor primary establishments, including pubs, bars, lounges and nightclubs as well as liquor manufacturing facilities that have tasting rooms and private clubs. 

As an owner or operator, this guidance will support you when preparing or amending your Communicable Disease Plan. This guidance will enable patrons to understand their responsibilities under the Order and ways to comply with the premises’ Communicable Disease Plan.

The document includes guidance on:

  • Employee sickness
  • Personal hygiene
  • Personal protective equipment
  • Modify the environment
  • Managing information

Download the guidance document.

For more information, please read the current public health orders: 

REMINDER: Have your say on BC’s permanent paid sick leave

British Columbians are invited to provide input into the development of made-in-BC permanent paid sick leave to support workers and protect workplaces.

In addition to outreach to key stakeholders and Indigenous partners, a public consultation process is now open and can be accessed through government’s engagement site.

There will be two phases of consultation:

  • Phase 1 (August 5 to September 14) – surveys will gather information from employers and workers on the kinds of paid illness and injury leaves currently provided, and how they are meeting workers’ needs; and
  • Phase 2 (September 20 to October 25) – informed by the surveys, options will be prepared for various paid sick leave models, including the numbers of paid days and other supports, and will be posted for public feedback and input.

In May 2021, amendments to the Employment Standards Act laid the groundwork for establishing minimum standards for a permanent paid sick leave entitlement.

Following the public engagement process, paid sick leave will be established through a regulation, and come into effect on January 1, 2022.

To participate in the consultation process, click here

For more information on BC’s employment standards, click here.

ABLE BC and the Coalition of BC Businesses (of which ABLE BC is a member) will also be providing a submission on behalf of our membership.

Federal election set for September 20, 2021

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that Governor General Mary Simon approved his request to dissolve Parliament, triggering Canada’s 44th general election, set for September 20, 2021.

While ABLE BC will not be supporting any particular party or candidates in this election, we will keep you apprised of any commitments the parties make aimed at our sectors.

You can learn more about the four major parties and their commitments here:

Conservative Party

Liberal Party

New Democratic Party

Green Party

  • website | policy platform (not yet available)

Staffing issues: share your thoughts

We know staffing is a HUGE issue right now. Please help our partners at go2HR with a Labour Market Information Research Project. Participate in the survey today and enter into a draw for prizes valued at $1,500.

go2HR is the human resource and health & safety association for BC’s tourism and hospitality industry. Even before COVID-19, the industry faced significant human resource challenges. We know these challenges will only increase as we emerge from the pandemic.

With funding from the Governments of Canada and British Columbia, go2HR is responding to these challenges by undertaking an ambitious labour market research project.

Click here to take the survey. It takes about 25 minutes to complete and, with your help, will include a representative sample of employers from across BC. The survey will capture data about the impact of COVID-19 on your operations, the human resources issues you’re facing, and what you need in the future.

Participants will be entered into a draw for prizes valued at $1,500. You will also receive monthly email updates on the labour market, and a summary of survey findings.

The survey is being administered by the Qatalyst Research Group. Your answers are strictly confidential and will not be shared with us, except in summary.

For more information, contact Judy Frankel, Communications Manager at go2HR or Jacky Zhang, Manager of Research at Qatalyst.

Click here to take the survey.

Free webinar on September 1: Lead generation and marketing tips for reopening

ABLE BC and Ballistic Arts invite you to join us for a free webinar on Wednesday, September 1 at 10:00 am PT: Lead Generation and Marketing Tips for Reopening.


At last! British Columbia and the rest of Canada are opening back up. That’s great news, but how are you going to best take advantage of this for your business?

Will you marketing tactics that you used during the lockdown work now that the economy is reemerging?

What new initiatives should you think about and what should you avoid?

Join us on this one-hour webinar ‘Lead Generation and Marketing Tips for BC’s Reopening’ with expert Ted Lau, CEO of award-winning Ballistic Arts, and podcast host of Marketing News Canada.

What you’ll learn:

  • The big changes in Apple, Facebook, and Google that will affect how you market
  • What type of cost effective marketing content makes sense for your lead generation efforts
  • Even more about the Marketing Funnel/Loop and where you need to focus in the reopening

The economy is reopening, are you ready? Register now for the webinar.

If you are unable to attend live, a webinar recording will be sent to everyone registered.

Please contact contact Danielle Leroux (Director of Membership and Communications) with any other questions or concerns:

Leveraging Email Marketing

Our inboxes are consistently one of the most used apps on our phones, and the most personal way to communicate at scale.

There may not be a single other opportunity that allows small businesses to create a connection with as many individuals as we like, to craft messages they’re going to find valuable, and then distribute those messages without technical skills, with very little cost, and directly to people’s personal devices.

Read Conner Galway’s (President, Junction Consulting) latest article in the The Quarterly Pour for practical tips on how you can leverage email marketing.

Compensation and Retention Strategies

In the fall 2021 issue of the Quarterly Pour, go2HR’s Ginger Brunner shares compensation and retention strategies for the tourism and hospitality industry. Read the article.

The article covers what employers should consider when it comes to the impact of compensation on employee retention, including compensation planning, total compensation, gratuities and retention, and rewarding and recognizing employees. Read more.

BC Hotel Association: Vancouver Island Live Industry Update Series

The BC Hotel Association is hosting a series of live industry updates geared to accommodators across Vancouver Island. 

During these free sessions, hear directly from the BCHA team and have the opportunity to share your own perspectives and priorities, as we shift to pandemic recovery. 

The sessions will be tailored to each region and include: updates on provincial and federal advocacy efforts, information on emerging issues and ways to mitigate risk, tools and resources available to members, recovery strategies, and more.

TOFINO: register here

  • Tuesday, October 5 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
  • Wickanninnish Conference Hall at the Best Western Plus Tin Wis (1119 Pacific Rim Hwy)

COURTENAY: register here

  • Wednesday, October 6, 2021 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
  • Ballroom at Crown Isle Resort (399 Clubhouse Drive)

PARKSVILLE: register here

  • Wednesday, October 6 from 2:00 pm to 5:30 pm
  • Grand Moriarty Conference Room at Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort & Conference Centre (1155 Resort Drive)

NANAIMO: register here

  • Thursday, October 7 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
  • Opera & Harbour Rooms at Best Western Dorchester (70 Church Street)

Please register by Wednesday, September 29.

Propel: Federally-funded Student Work Placement Program

On August 4, Tourism HR Canada announced the launch of Propel, a federally-funded Student Work Placement program offering paid work-integrated learning opportunities in the the tourism and hospitality sector.

Students gain paid hands-on learning and mentoring in their field of study. Employers acquire much-needed early talent to help with the recovery of the industry, as well as assistance with wages.

Funded by Employment and Social Development Canada through the Student Work Placement program, Propel offers employers a wage subsidy of up to 75 per cent of qualifying student’s wages, to a maximum of $7,500.

Student enrolled at a recognized post-secondary institution can apply for a paid position to fulfil the co-op or internship component of their program.

For more information and to apply, click here.

Funding for Business Strategy or Research Projects Available!

Have a business strategy or research project in mind? Mitacs’ matching funds can help! Talent MATCH is hosting a free info session with Mitacs on September 22 at 1:00 pm (PT). 

Mitacs connects students with organizations to support innovation and research projects. Interns provide expertise on everything from operations to finance, to marketing, to intellectual property, and beyond to help businesses develop and implement innovation – and Mitacs funding will support you to bring these students onboard! Funding for projects can be matched to a maximum of $7,500! 

Click for more information on Mitacs’ Business Strategy Internship and Accelerate Programs. Join us on September 22 to learn more. The Info Session is free, but you must register in advance.

Join the fight! Become a member today.


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