One week after tightening COVID rules in the province, Manitoba has upped the ante once again, this time for a month.
On April 26, Premier Brian Pallister and Chief Provincial Public Health Officer Brent Roussin appeared before the people once again to give them the bad news. On April 19, the government had made small tweaks to the Code Red restrictions with the hope they would be good enough to stem the tide of the rising cases, including tougher variants, in the third wave. However, after a weekend that saw skyrocketing cases, it was deemed not enough.
“The third wave of the pandemic is here. It’s a race between variants and vaccines right now in most of our country,” Pallister said, “and right now the variants are winning.”
As the premier stated, they started to strengthen public health orders the previous week to help stem the problem and try to keep from a full shutdown. In spite of collective efforts, and some of the toughest rules in the country, the test positivity and hospitalization rates are going up. Pallister said it was a tough spot, but not unprecedented as we faced them before.
The new rules would be in place for four weeks, starting Wednesday, April 28. This would carry it beyond the May long weekend, the traditional beginning of outdoor times
“It is bad news to some but understandable. It is the unofficial beginning of summer. We will have to delay that unofficial start a little this year.”
Roussin said they worked hard to keep numbers under control, but the variants became a wild card. We are now in a similar position as we were last October, when new shutdowns began.