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B.C. opens the door for small summer weddings with no international visitors

Click to play video: 'Coronavirus: B.C.health minister says ‘not this year’ for big weddings' Coronavirus: B.C.health minister says ‘not this year’ for big weddings
Speaking during Global's COVID-19 Town Hall, B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix dashed the hope of brides and grooms hoping to have a "normal" wedding this year. Paul Johnson reports – Jan 29, 2021

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says weddings will be permitted in the province this summer, but they will have to be small.

Taking questions in a Global BC Town Hall, Henry says the expectation is events like weddings will be OK this summer with expected limitations on the number of guests.

Click to play video: '‘Think small’: Dr. Bonnie Henry on holding summer weddings in B.C.' ‘Think small’: Dr. Bonnie Henry on holding summer weddings in B.C.
‘Think small’: Dr. Bonnie Henry on holding summer weddings in B.C – Jan 29, 2021

“Think small,” Henry said. “We’ll be in a similar place than we were last summer.”

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“We’ll still have this virus around, but we will be able to get together in a way that we’re not right now.”

Many couples postponed 2020 weddings with the hope of fewer restrictions in 2021. One restriction that is expected to be in place this summer is a ban on international visitors.

Health Minister Adrian Dix says brides and grooms should not expect to have any guests from outside the country.

“Just know international travel is not on,” Dix said.

“So if you’re planning a wedding where people are coming in from outside the country, that’s not for this year. Don’t do it at all.”

Click to play video: 'Henry and Dix answer your COVID-19 questions in Global News Hour Town Hall' Henry and Dix answer your COVID-19 questions in Global News Hour Town Hall
Henry and Dix answer your COVID-19 questions in Global News Hour Town Hall – Jan 29, 2021

In November, Fraser Health released an infographic showing the test-positive cases attending a single wedding in the region.

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Fifteen of the 50 people in attendance later contracted COVID-19. From there, one family business was hit with five cases of COVID-19. It also led to an outbreak at a long-term care home where 81 residents had to self-isolate in their rooms.

Ten households had someone test positive for the novel coronavirus, forcing 37 people to self-isolate. All told, the wedding was linked to one COVID-19 death and three hospitalizations.

It is still unclear what rules may exist for 2021 weddings around event size, shared food and physical distancing.

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