Dan Davies: COVID-19 and physical distancing

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Another week has passed since I spoke about COVID-19 in this column and we have seen some disturbing trends here in British Columbia and around the world. Despite the stern warning of health authorities, many people continue to ignore the gravity of the situation and put themselves and others at risk through unnecessary social contact and gatherings.

Although we recognize that the vast majority of British Columbians are doing their part, it is the reckless actions of these few individuals that run the very real risk of accelerating the spread of the coronavirus and overwhelming our healthcare system. We are now asking everyone to practice “physical distancing” to minimize any and all unnecessary social and physical contact. This is our best defence; we must ensure we all do our part to take the appropriate actions and to encourage those around us to do the same.

Remember to stay at home as much as possible except for essential trips, stay at least 6 feet (2 meters) away from others wherever you can, wash your hands as frequently as possible, and keep up to date with the latest recommendations from the provincial and federal health authorities, which can be found on the website of the BCCDC and during the daily briefings given by Health Minister Adrian Dix and Provincial Health Officer Doctor Bonnie Henry on Mondays at 10:00 AM and Tuesday to Friday at 3:00 PM.

Never forget that the actions we are taking are not only to protect ourselves – but to protect those most vulnerable in our communities, someone’s parent, grandparent, or loved one. Remember the mental health effects that self-isolation can have. Make sure you take time out of your day to check up on friends and relatives through messages, video chats, and phone calls – thanks to those who have reached out to me already! I would also like to take a moment to thank all our health care professionals, store clerks, and truck drivers who continue to play a critical role during these unprecedented times.

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Never forget that we are all in this as a community and together, we can give our medical professionals the best fighting chance to help those who need it most and keep our communities as safe as possible. My office is now closed, but we are answering emails – Dan.Davies.MLA@leg.bc.ca and messages 250-263-0101 or 1-877-332-0101. Thank you and stay well.

Dan Davies is the MLA for Peace River North.

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