Premier Horgan called on British Columbians to recommit themselves to working towards reducing the current accelerating pace of COVID-19 infection, sharing a number of his concerns over recent data that has shown a rising count of positive cases of the coronavirus on a daily basis over the last few weeks.
In his opening remarks, the Premier spoke of early celebrations and in particular seemed to direct much of his focus on British Columbia's younger residents from the late teens to early thirties for much of his attention.
But the past couple of weeks have put significant challenges in front of all of us and I wanted to be here with them today, to talk about those two primary issues. The first of course is the increase in case counts over the past ten days or so. Doctor Henry and Minister Dix will get into the details of that.
But during the past week case counts have risen unacceptably high, in fact higher today than at the worst point of the second wave between November and January of this year. The percentages of tests coming back positive has gone up 50 percent in some areas and the number of variants in British Columbia has also increased.
I wanted to be here to say to British Columbians that we have made such great progress, together focusing on our collective well being individual actions to protect the greater good and we've come a great distance but we cannot blow it now."
The Premier then observed as to the success of the vaccination program now underway, as well as the challenges that remain for the province in the weeks and weeks ahead and the need to redouble our efforts to focus on individual responsibility towards the greater good, with the Premier addressing his comments specifically to younger residents of the population.
"Now I know that the people that tune in regularly to see Doctor Henry and Minister Dix are following the rules, they are paying attention to the details and focusing on making sure that they do their part to get British Columbia through this.
The cohort from 20 to 39 are not paying as much attention to these broadcasts and quite frankly are putting the rest of us in a challenging situation.
I'm asking, I'm appealing to young people to curtail your social activity the directions will be quite clear from Doctor Henry.
But my appeal to you is do not blow this for the rest of us, do not blow this for your parents and your neighbours and others who hav been working really, really hard making significant sacrifices, so we can get good outcomes for everybody"
In the data review, it was noted that British Columbia recorded 2,518 new cases from Saturday through to today, with the number from Friday to Saturday of 936 the highest daily count for BC since the coronavirus arrived in January.
With a total to date of 98,165 residents having been confirmed with COVID-19, it's likely that British Columbia will no doubt pass the 100,000 mark well before the Easter weekend period gets underway on Thursday.
As for new measures, noting how this was a setback and a step back from where we wanted to be, Doctor Henry observe how these circuit breakers to be put in place over the next three weeks will be essential to allow for the vaccination program to find success and to let the province reach its destination.New and amended orders and guidelines are in effect through April 19, 2021, and include: