Manitobans ticketed for holding private gatherings since start of COVID-19 spring

The Manitoba government says it handed out 38 tickets for alleged violations of COVID-19 public health orders last week. Slavo Kutas/Global News

The Manitoba government says more than a dozen tickets were handed out to people caught holding gatherings in homes last week even as COVID-19 restrictions continue.

In a weekly update on coronavirus public health order enforcement Tuesday, the province says 15 of the 22 tickets to individuals doled out between March 22 and 28 were for gatherings held at private residences.

Read more: Manitoba to remain under ‘critical’ level of COVID-19 pandemic response

The offences come with a $1,296 fine.

Last week the province made minor changes to public health orders but left in place limits on indoor and outdoor gathering sizes at homes.

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Coronavirus: Manitoba to remain under ‘critical’ level of COVID-19 pandemic response – Mar 23, 2021

In all the province says 49 warnings were given last week, as well as 38 tickets for various offences, including thirteen $298-tickets for failing to wear a mask in an indoor public place, two $5,000 tickets to businesses, and one $5,150 fine under the federal quarantine act.

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Read more: Manitoba limits AstraZeneca vaccine, reports 136 new cases of COVID-19 variants

“Most Manitobans are doing their part to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and are following the fundamentals. However, education and enforcement remain necessary in some instances,” reads a release from the province.

“The public is reminded that abusive and aggressive behaviour will not be tolerated, and criminal offences will be reported to police and investigated.”

Last week the province said charges had been laid in connection to the alleged assault of a COVID-19 enforcement officer on Feb. 19.

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Since last April, the province says 3,541 warnings and 1,120 tickets have been issued to individuals and businesses, resulting in more than $1.5 million in fines.

Read more: Charges laid in alleged assault of Manitoba COVID-19 enforcement officer, province says

Nearly 3,300 personnel across various agencies are currently able to enforce public health orders.

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

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To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out. In situations where you can’t keep a safe distance from others, public health officials recommend the use of a non-medical face mask or covering to prevent spreading the respiratory droplets that can carry the virus. In some provinces and municipalities across the country, masks or face coverings are now mandatory in indoor public spaces.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, visit our coronavirus page.

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