Maple Ridge, BC: Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General, has invoked extraordinary powers under a State of Provincial Emergency (SOPE) to keep British Columbians safe, maintain essential goods and services, and support the Province’s ongoing response to novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
The link to today’s announcement can be found at news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2020PSSG0020- 000568. “I would like to commend Minister Farnworth for stepping in to ensure a stronger and more consistent approach with public messaging on community safety and responsibilities during the COVID-19 response,” said Mayor Morden. “Right from the start of COVID-19 your Council made a conscious decision to follow the lead of Dr. Henry and the BC Government in the response to this global health emergency. Today’s announcements end the patchwork of emergency declarations and provide local governments with new tools to ensure we can deploy local resources to effectively support the orders issued by Dr. Henry.”
He continued, “Our Emergency Operations Centre has been active for two weeks and working in anticipation of the ministerial orders. We have deployed personnel into the community to engage with citizens who are ignoring the facility shutdowns enacted to stop the spread of COVID-19. Our bylaws officers now have enhanced enforcement powers, who in conjunction with the Ridge Meadows RCMP, will escalate response where the community education message is not being followed.” “I want to send a strong message that there can be no politics when it comes to the COVID19 response. I have been in constant contact with all levels of government and our local School District and never before have I experienced unprecedented access to BC Cabinet Ministers as we work together to coordinate our efforts. We stand united in our support of Dr. Henry and will continue to implement her recommendations in the coming weeks and months as we do everything necessary to flatten the curve of COVID-19 to protect our citizens,” said the Mayor.
“As citizens, we must do our part and follow social distancing and hand washing. It is vital to protect our frontline workers who make sure we have access to food, prescriptions and essential services so that our loved ones, coworkers and neighbours stay safe. Our first responders, police, fire and ambulance are there for us. The daily 7:00 pm tribute of cheers and applause throughout Maple Ridge demonstrates the admiration and support all citizens have towards our first responders and health care workers,” he continued. As a final message the Mayor said “Be kind. Help each other. Let’s work together Maple Ridge, we’ve got this.” Go to mapleridge.ca for links to the authoritative sources for information on the Federal, Provincial and local response to COVID-19.