Phase Two of Emerging Wisely

The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) has moved to Relaxing Phase Two of Emerging Wisely – the territory’s plan for relaxing the COVID-19 public health restrictions,  and made amendments to the territory’s travel restrictions.

In phase two, outdoor gathering limits increase, more businesses and organizations will be able to open indoors with precautions in-place, and offices will be able to have a maximum of 25 people per floor as long as they are set up for physical distancing of at least two metres.

Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Kami Kandola has recommended we move to Phase 2 because standard testing remains strong, contact tracing capabilities remain strong, and community spread is non-existent.

The territory still has no active cases, and has not reported a new case in 69 days.

Most jurisdictions have seen an increase in cases when public health restrictions have been lifted and efforts will be made to avoid this across the NWT

The Chief Public Health Officer continues to require physical distance of two metres while at outdoor gatherings, recommends keeping to a limited friendship circle for indoor get-togethers, and requires businesses and organizations to have strong precautions in-place.

Updates have also been made to the Public Health Order – COVID-19 Travel Restrictions and Self-Isolation Protocol, and these changes come into effect today. Amendments have been made to form a two-territory travel bubble with Nunavut.

Other amendments include clarification on requirements for those moving to the NWT and traveling within the NWT for work or school. There is also additional clarity for family reunification as a compassionate exemption.

Notice of Future Amendments

Future amendments will also be made to the travel order to allow exemptions for residents of the NWT who are employed as:

  • Supply chain workers
  • Flight crews
  • Airline employees

These workers regularly leave the territory for employment purposes and return in the course of the same day. They have minimal contact with other communities and therefore the need to self-isolate, so long as the right precautions are taken are not necessary.

These situations to date have been handled on a case-by-case. The future amendments would eliminate the need for this burdensome implementation step, and provide clear precautions for these workers to abide by.



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