Coronavirus: Confusion around social gatherings in new Manitoba public health orders

Manitoba has toned down the restrictions surrounding social gatherings in people’s homes as the entire province moves into level Red on Thursday.

The original announcement made Tuesday by Manitoba’s Chief Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Brent Roussin, said that no social gatherings could happen and households were not to mix except in necessary circumstances.

Read more: Coronavirus: All of Manitoba moving to Level Red Thursday, tough restrictions to be implemented

“We know that there are certain things, such as family members providing child care or family members or friends providing service at that home to people. This is not what we are addressing here,” he said.

What the province has in mind is limiting social visits to your own household, he explained.

“We’re talking about essential purposes only. And that’s really what we need moving forward.”

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Yet as of Wednesday night, the new public health orders that were posted online simply state that the maximum size of gatherings in the province is five people.

“All persons are prohibited from assembling in a gathering of more than five persons at any indoor or outdoor place or premises,” the order reads.

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“In the case of a gathering at a private residence, all persons who reside at that residence are not to be included when calculating the number of persons at the gathering.

Read the latest public health order:

Manitoba’s NDP leader Wab Kinew called the walk back a “serious threat to our ability to fight COVID-19 in the province and will only cause confusion and doubt regarding public health measures.

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“It requires immediate explanation and, more importantly, reinstatement.”

However, Dr. Roussin fired back on social media Wednesday.

Again, #Stayhome to stop the transmission of #COVID19. That’s it. That’s the message,” he posted on Twitter.

Click to play video 'Coronavirus: All of Manitoba moving into Level Red as of Thursday' Coronavirus: All of Manitoba moving into Level Red as of Thursday

Coronavirus: All of Manitoba moving into Level Red as of Thursday

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