July 23, 2020

Dear ABLE BC members and industry colleagues,

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has just released a revised Public Health Order for all licensed premises in British Columbia.

All patrons in bars, restaurants, and nightclubs are required to be seated, alcohol self-service will not be available, and dancing as well as singing (including karaoke) are prohibited. 

Please read the new Provincial Health Officer Public Order hereA summary of the changes is provided below.

We’ll provide an updated copy of our Liquor Primary Reopening Best Practices later this week.

New Provincial Health Officer Public Order: Food Service Establishments, Liquor Services, and Events

These conditions apply to owners and operators of premises, including licensed premises, in which food services or drink services are provided. This order repeals and replaces the PHO order made on June 19, 2020.

Important updates in the new PHO order include: 

  • If patrons remain on the premises after being served, there must be sufficient seating for them, whether at tables, booths or counters, and patrons must be seated.
  • In licensed premises, patrons must be assigned to a table, booth, or counter and shown to their seats. Patrons must remain seated except to use a self-serve station, use washroom facilities, or leave the premises. (Patrons in premises with a manufacturing license may leave their seats to go to a bar for the purpose of being served a drink.)
  • There must be a sufficient number of staff at licensed premises to ensure that patrons remain seated and that patrons do not congregate in areas of the premises.
  • Patrons who are not in the same party must be seated two metres apart from one another unless they are separated by a physical barrier. There must be no more than six patrons seated at a table or booth, even if they belong to the same party.
  • Please refer to the public order for additional conditions on physical distancing.
  • Liquor may only be served to patrons who are seated. Please refer to the public order for additional conditions on self-service food or a non-alcoholic drink station.
  • You must assess your premises and the areas outside your premises for places where patrons may congregate or stand in line, and in those places, you must use physical devices, install markers, or use other methods to guide and assist patrons in maintaining a distance of two metres from other patrons.
  • Dance floors must be closed with physical barriers or occupied with tables.
  • Patrons must not sing or dance on the premises.
  • If there is an event on the premises, you must collect contact information for every patron. Please refer to the public order for additional conditions on contact tracing.
  • An event may only be hosted between noon and 11 p.m, and no more than two events may be hosted in one day on the same premises or in an area of the premises.
  • All events must end no later than 11:00 pm. Please refer to the public order for additional conditions on hosting events.
  • Measures, such as selling tickets for an event in advance, or letting patrons know by way of a telephone call or an App that a table is ready, must be implemented in order to reduce or decrease the occurrence of line-ups and the congregation of patrons in one place. 
  • In places where line-ups or congregations of patrons may or do occur, physical devices or markers must be installed, or other methods used to guide and assist patrons in maintaining a distance of two metres from other patrons.
  • If live music is provided during an event a physical barrier must be installed between the performers and the patrons which blocks the transmission of droplets produced by performers, and there must be at least a three metre separation between performers and patrons.

Please review the full Provincial Health Officer Public Order here.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact ABLE BC: 604-688-5560 or info@ablebc.ca.


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