Changes have been made to reflect proof of vaccination requirements.
On November 8, 2021, the Government of Yukon declared a State of Emergency to allow for new temporary measures recommended by the acting Chief Medical Officer of Health to rapidly decrease the transmission of COVID-19 and ensure the territory’s healthcare capacity is not overwhelmed.
Community Services Minister Richard Mostyn has authorized new Ministerial Orders under the Civil Emergency Measures Act that come into effect on November 13, 2021:
- Civil Emergency Measures Masks (COVID-19) Order
- Civil Emergency Measures Health Protection (COVID-19) Order, 2021
- Civil Emergency Measures Enforcement (COVID-19) Order (2021)
Under the Masks Order, mask use is required by all persons 5 years of age or older in all public places.
- Mandatory masking is required in all indoor public settings and in outdoor public settings where physical distancing cannot be maintained. Mask use is required in vehicles when there are occupants from more than one household.
- Masks are required at all times inside schools, including when students are in classrooms and seated at their desks as well as all indoor school settings outside the classroom, such as common areas and hallways.
- Participants in high intensity physical activities which cannot reasonably be done while wearing a mask are exempt from the mandatory masking requirement. For example, for curling or low intensity exercise classes, masks need to be worn but not for hockey, soccer or basketball. Masks do need to be worn when not actively engaged in playing the sport.
The Health Protection Order implements the following recommendations of the acting Chief Medical Officer of Health:
- Limits on personal gatherings to 10 people from a maximum of two households if all eligible people are vaccinated; household members only if any eligible people are unvaccinated.
- Limits on organized gatherings, including conferences and weddings: indoor gatherings limited to 25 individuals with proof of vaccination required; outdoor gatherings limited to 50 individuals.
- Limits on seated ticketed events, including arts and sporting events: maximum 50 per cent of venue capacity or 25 individuals, whichever is lower, with proof of vaccination required; seating limited to individual households with physical distancing between households.
- Limits on faith-based and cultural gatherings: maximum 50 per cent of venue capacity or 25 individuals, whichever is lower, with proof of vaccination required; seating limited to individual households with physical distancing between households.
- Restrictions on restaurants, bars and nightclubs: proof of vaccination required for table service with a limit of six individuals per table; no counter service, no moving between tables and no dancing.
- Restrictions on gyms, fitness and yoga studios and classes: maximum 50 per cent of venue capacity or 25 individuals, whichever is lower, with proof of vaccination required.
NOTE: the acting Chief Medical Officer of Health has revoked her recommendation regarding the suspension of high intensity exercise classes. These classes and other high intensity sports (e.g., hockey, basketball, and soccer) will continue to be permitted with proof of vaccination for participants. The benefits of allowing high intensity sports and activities were considered to be greater at this time than the benefits of suspending all high intensity activities.
- Restrictions on personal services: proof of vaccination required.
- Limits on other indoor public spaces: maximum 50 per cent of venue capacity or 25 individuals, whichever is lower.
- Individual workplaces may be required to temporarily close under direction of the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health.
Nothing in the Health Protection Order prevents a government, business or non-governmental organization from making health protection measures that are more stringent than the ones set out in the Order. All Yukoners are urged to be respectful of all designated settings where new measures are now in effect.
The Enforcement Order empowers health officers and the RCMP to enforce the provisions of the Masks Order and the Health Protection Order.
The new measures will be in place until at least December 3, 2021. The Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health will continue to actively assess the risk levels in the territory associated with COVID-19 transmission and adjust recommendations as necessary.
Yukon communities are at significant risk from the current COVID-19 case activity. The acting Chief Medical Officer is recommending that travel between communities, and between communities and Whitehorse, be avoided until further notice.
The new temporary measures under the Civil Emergency Measures Act do not affect travel into and out of the territory.
Proof of Vaccination Requirement
Proof of vaccination is now required to access designated settings. The list of designated settings is available here.
A person must provide proof of vaccination either outside the designated setting or immediately upon entering. The requirement to be vaccinated will not apply to staff of designated settings while they are in a designated setting for work purposes.
Limited exemptions to the proof of vaccination requirement include:
- Individuals under the age of 12 are exempt from the proof of vaccination requirements along with one parent who may be required to accompany a child under the age of 12 to that child’s recreational or sporting activity.
- Individuals with a medical deferral issued by a physician or nurse practitioner.
The onus for verifying proof of vaccination is placed on the person responsible for the setting. It is an enforceable offence to allow entry to unvaccinated individuals or to not verify their vaccination status.
Until a Yukon government app is available that can verify QR codes on government-issued proof of vaccination certificates (PVCs), operators will be able to check PVCs visually, either in paper form or in electronic form.
Yukoners will be permitted to use the Record of Vaccination card they received when they were immunized until November 30, 2021. As of December 1, 2021, only government-issued PVCs will be accepted as proof of vaccination to access designated settings.
Verifier must check that name and date of birth on PVC is same as on ID. For those over 18, photo must be a photo of the person presenting the ID. Government-issued identification for youth age 12-18 will also require a photo. Those under the age of 12 may be asked to prove their age with valid, government issued identification.
It is an enforceable offence for an unvaccinated individual to be present in a designated setting without being exempted from the requirement.