The second phase of Manitoba’s reopening plan will begin on June 1.

Premier Brian Pallister made the announcement at a news conference on Wednesday.

“While we can take pride in the progress we’ve made and the additional steps we’re announcing today, I emphasize we must remain vigilant,” the premier said.

“We do not want a COVID comeback in this province, and there is no room for complacency.”

The Manitoba government announced Phase Two of the reopening plan last week, which includes:

  • Limited access to education facilities;
  • Increasing child-care centre occupancy;
  • Resuming sports, arts and cultural services;
  • Removing occupancy limits at outdoor recreation facilities and golf courses;
  • Permitting travel to northern parks, campgrounds, cabins, lodges, and resorts;
  • Reopening public pools, spas, fitness clubs, gyms, and community service centres;
  • Allowing religious organizations to hold outdoor services as long as people stay in their cars;
  • Resuming operations for nail salons, tattoo parlours, estheticians, cosmetologists, electrologists and tanning parlours; and
  • Permitting bars, beverage rooms, and micro-brewers to operate their patios and reopen indoor spaces.

Though these businesses will be permitted to open, they must do so under strict guidelines outlined by the province.

The Manitoba government noted that it has altered the original Phase Two draft plan based on input from the public and health officials. These changes include:

  • Detailed guidance for post-secondary education institutions and vocational colleges;
  • Getting rid of occupancy limits for therapeutic and healthcare services;
  • Detailed guidance for senior’s clubs;
  • More details on the safety requirements for splash pads;
  • Updated guidance for community centres;
  • Reopening of arts and cultural activities, including dance and theatre;
  • Further clarification on the reopening of bars, beverage rooms, brew pubs, micro-brewers, and distilleries that don’t serve food, along with guidance on seating; and
  • Detailed guidelines for film productions.

"I would mention that in each of these categories that have been developed in partnership with the various organizations, strict protocols that must be followed so that we can maintain the discipline necessary to keep ourselves safe,” Pallister said.

There will be no changes to the requirements for reopening museums, galleries, libraries, parks, campgrounds, and vacation cabins.

When asked what will happen if there’s a spike in hospitalizations in a few weeks, he said the province will continue to watch the positive test numbers.

“If they grow by 10 per cent, 20 per cent or 30 per cent, it’s still not a concern,” Pallister said, noting right now Manitoba is below one per cent on positive tests.

Pallister urged Manitobans not to panic if more positive tests emerge in the future, because the province is doing more testing in general. The premier said it’s also possible there might be some community transmission this summer as people get outdoors and interact.

“As we do more tests, there’s a likelihood there will be more positives, it’s the percentage of positives that matters more,” he said.

The full plan can be found below.