'Be very, very careful': Sask. officials urge caution for Easter weekend celebrations
REGINA -- Provincial officials are asking residents to be careful with Easter celebrations this weekend, with gatherings up to 10 people allowed in most Saskatchewan communities.
The province is suggesting that all Saskatchewan families consider virtual gatherings, with your immediate household only.
Premier Scott Moe recommended that people living in Moose Jaw and other areas of south east Saskatchewan reconsider weekend gatherings, despite limited indoor gatherings being allowed in those areas.
"I would just also urge folks to be very, very careful. If they are going to gather I would urge them to consider potentially not gathering this weekend," Moe said. "Let's not have a bunch of spread of this variant just in the final few metres of this race."
Outside of the Regina region, private indoor gatherings must be from two to three consistent households and cannot exceed 10 people.
Within the Regina zone, indoor private gatherings are limited to immediate household. People who live alone and single parents of minor children are allowed to meet with one consistent household, of less than five people.
"If anyone in the household feels unwell, even with the most-mild symptoms, do not continue with plans and seek COVID-19 testing immediately," the province said, in a release.
While limited indoor gatherings are allowed outside of the Regina zone, Dr. Saqib Shahab, the province's chief medical health officer, said outdoor holiday gatherings are a much safer option.
"Meet and greet each other outdoors, spend time outdoors, while maintaining that physical distance," Shahab said.
"Gathering indoors, especially in the south, I think is high risk."
Dr. Shahab said the province's vaccination process will go much smoother, if it is able to lower case numbers.
"If we increase our community transmission, it puts everyone who has to work outside the home at risk, so we have to do what we can in terms of keeping our social contacts minimal, being extremely careful when out and about and at work," Shahab said.
If Public Health Orders allow you to have a small gathering, the province suggests getting Easter grocery shopping done ahead of time. Only one member of a household should do the shopping.
Similarly, the government said one person should handle food and drink preparation, while wearing a non medical mask. Food should also be served and plated by one person.
Having individual portions delivered from a restaurant or caterer is also recommended for consideration.
Non-essential travel to and from the Regina area is not recommended at the moment, including interprovincial travel.