'A lot of people are very happy': N.S. to move into final stage of COVID-19 reopening plan on Wednesday
Nova Scotia is expected to move into Phase 5 of its COVID-19 reopening plan at 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday. When the province does move into its final stage, mandatory masking will be dropped and there will be no gathering limits.
For some, it’s welcome news, while others say it is too soon.
"I'd rather just stay the way it is now,” said Thomas Cormier. “Cases are going up and to just drop our guard, it's just going to go right back to where it was, you know, a few months ago."
Alison Lloy spent the day getting her family tested for COVID-19. She says she's scared to see restrictions lifted.
"There's a positive case at my kid's school, so I'd wait until more people are vaccinated and keep the masks on for a little while until things are a little less scary,” said Lloy.
The president of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union would like to see masking and other public health measures continue in schools for the time being. Right now, masks will only be required in schools until Sept. 20.
"We all saw how it crippled the province when schools had to close for extended periods for remote learning. Nobody needs that again and if we're going to keeps schools open safely, sustainably, that cocktail of ingredients is what's going to allow students to remain open so we don't have to go back to remote learning,” said Paul Wozney, NSTU president.
Beginning Oct. 4, those looking to participate in non-essential activities will need to provide proof of vaccination.
Although restrictions are expected to lift Wednesday, the Zatzman Sportsplex in Dartmouth, N.S. says it will continue to operate under the province's Phase 4 guidelines for the time being.
"For the Sportplex, we made the decision that we're not actually going to start implementing the Phase 5 lack of restrictions until Oct. 4, to coincide, with the proof of vaccination,” said Arne Buchanan.
Buchanan says the decision was made after listening to feedback from their members and wanting to hire additional staff before moving into Phase 5.
"A lot of people are very happy that, you know, we're going to keep these restrictions just until October 4. A lot of people are just very anxious to get back to normalcy again and we completely understand that. We just want to make sure when we do go to Phase 5 and when we do reopen, we can do it in a safe, happy, great way,” said Buchanan.
A COVID-19 update is scheduled with Premier Tim Houston and Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia's chief medical officer of health, for Tuesday at 3 p.m. AT.