A Vancouver Island teacher has started a petition imploring B.C. Premier John Horgan to close provincial borders to non-essential travel and enforce stricter quarantine measures for travellers. (B.C. government)

A Vancouver Island teacher has started a petition imploring B.C. Premier John Horgan to close provincial borders to non-essential travel and enforce stricter quarantine measures for travellers. (B.C. government)

Teacher launches petition for B.C. to close provincial border, impose stricter quarantine

Province says what works elsewhere may not work here

Through an online petition a Vancouver Island teacher is imploring B.C. Premier John Horgan to close the borders of the the province for a month and quarantine travellers in a bid to control the spread of COVID-19 strains.

Almost 8,000 others seem to agree with him.

A week ago, Christian Stapff – a teacher with School District 84 (Vancouver Island West) – started the petition to close the border to non-essential air, ground and sea traffic in order to contain and stop the spread of the virus, “especially in light of more virulent strains already in B.C.”

Stapff used the efficacy of such strict measures in Western Australia as an example to further advocate for provincial border closures.

“We implore you to take this action to save the economy and lives not yet lost,” Stapff tells the premier in his petition.

Of late calls have been mounting for the province to impose an inter-provincial travel ban after the surge of coronavirus variants in B.C.

But the premier announced late Thursday afternoon that such a move was not going to happen.

RELATED: Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

It was a decision hinted at by the the provincial Ministry of Health in an email statement earlier in the day.

The Ministry of Health told the Mirror that what works elsewhere may not work here.

“B.C. is not an island and we have many ports of entry,” said a ministry spokesperson.

“Questions about inter-provincial travel have come up repeatedly so we are doing due diligence by seeking legal advice in order to put the matter to rest,” said the ministry, and added, “Of course we can’t put up walls at our provincial borders and essential travel critical to our economy must safely continue.”

The ministry said that they are also considering economic impacts and the practicalities of such a policy, and are reaching out to key sectors of the economy to get feedback. It said that no steps will be taken without thoughtful consultation with communities and businesses affected by these decisions.

“As we roll out the vaccine, the bottom line is that public health advice remains the same – now is not a time for non-essential travel.”

Stapff had yet to respond to requests for an interview by the time of this posting.

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

ALSO READ: Isolating provinces is a bad idea, says Canadian Chamber of Commerce

ALSO READ: Vancouver Island smashes COVID-19 high: 47 new cases in a day

Coronavirusvancouverisland

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

NDIT logo.
NDIT grants over $160K to Vanderhoof for street lighting project on Burrard

Total cost of the project is approximately $380,000

Internet speeds in Vanderhoof have been a cause of concern for many local businesses. (File photo)
Lack of good connectivity puts rural communities at a disadvantage: Vanderhoof Mayor

The district is working with RDBN to get better internet facilities to town.

District of Vanderhoof municipal office. (Aman Parhar/Omineca Express)
Vanderhoof business can apply for a façade improvement program

The program provides funding up to $5,000 to update the look of the commercial property façade.

Kiah Thiessen-Clark and Kate Thiessen-Clark from W.L. McLeod Elementary won third place in their grade during the science fair held by School District 91. (SD91/website)
SD91 District holds Science Fair; announces 2021 finalists

Several finalists were from EBUS Academy and W.L. McLeod Elementary

(Photo - Pixabay)
NVSS Queer Alliance group in Vanderhoof launch “Share the Love” campaign

Sense of community, empowerment and positivity are the visions of the NVSS group

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

Grand Forks’ Gary Smith stands in front of his Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster float. Photo: Submitted
Grand Forks’ Flying Spaghetti Monster leader still boiling over driver’s licence photo

Gary Smith, head of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster of B.C., said he has since spoken to lawyers

A Cowichan Valley mom is wondering why masks haven’t been mandated for elementary schools. (Metro Creative photo)
B.C. mom frustrated by lack of mask mandate for elementary students

“Do we want to wait until we end up like Fraser Health?”

(Pxhere)
B.C. research reveals how pandemic has changed attitudes towards sex, health services

CDC survey shows that 35 per cent of people were worried about being judged

Some Canadians are finding butter harder than usual, resulting in an avalanche of social media controversy around #buttergate. (Brett Williams/The Observer)
#Buttergate: Concerns around hard butter hit small B.C. towns and beyond

Canadians find their butter was getting harder, blame palm oil in part one of this series

Jobs Minister Ravi Kahlon speaks in the B.C. legislature, describing work underway to make a small business and tourism aid package less restrictive, Dec. 10, 2020. (Hansard TV)
B.C. extends deadline for tourism, small business COVID-19 grants

Business owners expect months more of lost revenues

Anti-pipeline protests continue in Greater Vancouver, with the latest happening Thursday, March 4 at a Trans Mountain construction site in Burnaby. (Facebook/Laurel Dykstra)
A dozen faith-based protestors blockade Burnaby Trans Mountain site in prayer

The group arrived early Thursday, planning to ‘block any further work’

Mid day at the Vancouver Port Intersection blockade on March 3, organized by the Braided Warriors. (Zoë Ducklow photo)
Anti-pipeline blockade at Vancouver intersection broken up by police

Demonstraters were demanding the release of a fellow anti-TMX protester

(Government of B.C.)

Most Read