MLA for Columbia River-Revelstoke and Opposition Tourism Critic Doug Clovechok has expressed his concerns regarding COVID-19 and its potential impact on B.C. tourism.
Clovechok said that COVID-19 could potentially cause problems for an economy reliant on tourism.
“One of the big issues is that if you’re a hotel owner, you have a staff member who’s at the front desk who ends up getting COVID-19, do you quarantine all of your staff for 14 days? If you have to do that, you have to shut down your business, and how many touchpoints were there between that particular individual and your client base,” said Clovechok.
Clovechok added that while the number of cases around the world grows, people are cancelling trips abroad, including B.C. destinations.
“International travel to long-haul destinations is being curbed through airline flights, but that opens up the American market. People are telling me they’re starting to get cancellations already, and I hope that isn’t going to be a continuing trend.”
He added that while the specific numbers are unknown at the time, the impacts on the tourism industry has been felt.
Clovechok commended the Province’s response to the coronavirus so far.
“I think B.C. is ahead of the curve, it’s certainly something we cannot take for granted. If people think they’re sick, stay home, and like the minister said yesterday, don’t go on a cruise ship,” stated Clovechok. “I think we have to self-monitor, self-regulate and hopefully, this will pass.”
Clovechok also offered recommendations to the public on how to avoid getting sick and spreading illness.
“The best preventative thing you can do is wash your hands, antibacterial soap kills this virus,” CLovechok said to MyEastKootenayNow.com. “If you have a cold or you’re feeling a little sick, educate yourself about what the symptoms are if COVID-19 and if you’re not feeling well, go see your doctor and for goodness sake, don’t go to work.”
As of Thursday, March 12th Canada’s first COVID-19 death has been reported in Noth Vancouver earlier this week, with 46 confirmed cases of the virus in B.C.
More: B.C. Reporting Canada’s First Coronavirus Death (March 9, 2020)
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