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Three Vancouver cops contract COVID-19 after responding to ‘out-of-control’ party: union

Click to play video 'B.C. officials report 53 new cases of COVID-19, no additional deaths' B.C. officials report 53 new cases of COVID-19, no additional deaths
A round up of the latest COVID-19 news in British Columbia for Friday, August 7.

Three Vancouver police officers have tested positive for the novel coronavirus after responding to a large party, according to the union head.

Three members of the department are sick after being called to an “out of control” party with more than 100 people in attendance, said Ralph Kaisers, president of the Vancouver Police Union, on social media on Friday.

Kaisers told Global News the party took place in an apartment in downtown Vancouver in late July.

Between 16 to 20 officers are in self-isolation as a result, Kaisers said.

The Vancouver Police Department confirmed that three of its officers have tested positive and that others who were exposed are self-isolating at home, but gave no further details.

Read more: Private parties in Vancouver area linked to at least 45 COVID-19 cases, officials say

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In her daily news conference on Thursday, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said at least 45 recent cases of COVID-19 have been linked to parties in the Vancouver area.

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The exposure bears a resemblance to an outbreak in Kelowna connected to private gatherings that took place over the Canada Day long weekend, she said.

At the same news conference, Health Minister Adrian Dix said more than 1,500 British Columbians are self-isolating “because of, in some cases, a failure to engage in physical distancing.”

He had a message for people looking to plan or attend private parties: “Enough. That’s enough now.”

Read more: Vancouver police officer tests positive for COVID-19

“Whether it’s table-hopping or packed houseboats or free-for-all parties in a private residence, large groups over an extended time period are the biggest welcome mat there is for COVID-19 and it’s time to stop putting out that welcome mat.”

The province reported 53 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, the highest number of new cases since late April.

A weekly report from the BC Centre for Disease Control shows 290 new cases were reported from July 31 to Aug. 6, a 46-per-cent increase from the week before.

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B.C. has seen a surge in cases since moving to Phase 3 of the government’s economic recovery plan on June 24. That’s when officials removed the ban on non-essential travel and encouraged people to safely travel within the province.