Plan to ease COVID-19 restrictions released with start of Phase I

The Government of Yukon and the Chief Medical Officer of Health have released A Path Forward: Yukon’s plan for lifting COVID-19 restrictions.

A Path Forward presents a gradual and phased approach to lifting COVID-19 restrictions, with a focus on protecting communities and vulnerable residents, and on preventing the re-introduction and spread of COVID-19 in Yukon. The plan lays out the principles that will guide decisions on easing restrictions. They are based on public health advice and best practices across Canada adapted to fit Yukon’s local context. Phase I: Restart of A Path Forward begins today, following the easing of certain restrictions already announced during the previous “response phase” of the plan.

The easing of restrictions is spread out over a number of phases. Moving to subsequent phases depends on meeting a set of clear criteria and conditions, including community engagement; keeping the ”6 steps to staying safe” preventative measures in place; controlling importation risk through border restrictions; maintaining health system and public health capacity; and continuing close monitoring of the current spread of the virus in and outside Yukon. Decisions around the timing for moving between phases in the plan will depend on risk assessment and the ongoing evaluation of success in maintaining stability and security at each phase.

Continued border controls are a key part of the plan. With no active cases in the territory, importation of COVID-19 remains Yukon’s greatest risk. By mitigating that risk and helping to ensure that COVID-19 does not enter the territory, it will be easier to relax restrictions for residents inside the territory.

The Government of Yukon will continue to meet with First Nations governments and municipal governments to discuss the public health details and collaborate on the other aspects of the plan and ongoing response to COVID-19.

Regular updates will continue to be posted on Yukon.ca. Information is also available by calling the COVID-19 InfoLine at 877-374-0425 (7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m, seven days a week) or emailing covid19info@gov.yk.ca.

As we look to ease restrictions in Yukon, it is paramount that we do so in a way that keeps our communities safe and healthy. A Path Forward outlines our plan to get Yukoners moving again as quickly and safely as possible while protecting our communities and our most vulnerable residents. We will continue to support Yukon families and businesses through each phase of this plan as we work towards revitalizing our territory.

Premier Sandy Silver 

We are in a much better place than so many of our fellow Canadians and the fact that we are able to move towards reopening is because of our successes. We were able to close our borders, self-isolate returning Yukoners and our citizens have embraced the safe six. We need to continue to do this so we can stay safe from the pandemic.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley

Quick facts 
  • With no new cases since April 20, Yukon remains one of the least restricted parts of the country. A Path Forward is a gradual and phased approach to easing current restrictions in the territory.

  • All employers are now required to complete a COVID-19 Operational Plan to identify hazards and mitigate risks for staff and the public.

  • Any organization wishing to have the plans of their event or activity reviewed by public health professionals can submit the details using an online form.

  • Restaurants will continue to be restricted to take-out only pending additional public health assessment and the development of an approved COVID-19 Operational Plan by restaurant operators.

  • Territorial campgrounds are on track to open on June 4 but remain closed at this time.

  • There have been no new cases of COVID-19 in Yukon since April 20, 2020. In total, Yukon has seen 11 cases of COVID-19, all of which have recovered.

  • If restrictions had not been put in place, Yukon could have experienced upwards of 2,500 cases of COVID-19 according to modelling developed by the Health Emergency Operations Centre.

  • Until there is a vaccine or effective and accessible treatments identified, measures will need to remain in place to limit the risk of infection in Yukon.

  • The ”6 steps to staying safe” are: physical distancing; regular hand washing; staying home when sick; not gathering in groups of more than 10; limiting travel to communities and self-isolating when required.

Contact 

Matthew Cameron
Cabinet Communications
867-393-7136
matthew.cameron@gov.yk.ca

Jordan Jackle
Communications, Executive Council Office
867-667-5341
jordan.jackle@gov.yk.ca

News release #: 
20-140