To best position us as we go into 2021, an amendment to provincial health officer (PHO) orders has been put in place to reduce the hours that alcohol may be sold or served on New Year’s Eve. The selling and serving of alcohol must cease between 8 p.m. (Pacific time) on Dec. 31, 2020, and 9 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2021. As before, liquor sales for onsite consumption must cease at 10 p.m. on all other dates.
“This order applies to any establishment that sells or serves alcohol, including bars, restaurants, pubs, liquor stores or grocery stores.
“Unless a full meal service is provided, premises that are licensed to serve liquor must close between 9 p.m. on Dec. 31, 2020, and 9 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2021.
“We know alcohol can impair people’s judgment and their ability to effectively use the layers of protection required to keep all of us safe. This order, while temporary, will ensure New Year’s Eve leads to a safe new year for everyone.
“We recognize this order creates an added strain on our already challenged restaurant and food services sector that has been working hard to ensure restaurants are safe. However, this is the time to do all we can to keep our wall strong. We remain confident that having a meal with your household contacts in a restaurant in B.C. is safe, and we encourage people to continue to visit their local restaurants to eat in or take away on New Year’s Eve.
Dr. Bonnie Henry