Government of Canada Announces Funding for COVID-19 Safe Voluntary Isolation Sites in British Columbia

January 28, 2022 at 2:12 am  Federal, Politics

November 26, 2021 – Ottawa, Ontario – Public Health Agency of Canada

The Government of Canada is working with partners to protect the health and safety of Canadians and Temporary Foreign Workers in Canada, and to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and its variants in Canada. Self-isolation is one of the most effective ways to help stop the spread of COVID-19. However, for some people in Canada, crowded housing conditions and high costs can make it unsafe or impossible to self-isolate, putting themselves, their families and communities at risk through no fault of their own. 

Today, the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Health, announced more than $5 million to support the following two projects in British Columbia, through the Government of Canada’s Safe Voluntary Isolation Sites Program:

  • an employer-based reimbursement program for agricultural workers living and working across British Columbia through the Government of British Columbia’s Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries to help support agri-worker isolation needs; 
  • and a safe voluntary isolation site in the City of Surrey through the Fraser Health Authority.

Voluntary self isolation sites help people who have COVID-19—or have been exposed to it—access safe isolation accommodations to keep themselves and their community safe. These sites are in addition to the facilities available for people experiencing homelessness who need to isolate because of a positive test. 

Voluntary isolation sites reduce the risk of spreading the virus among household contacts in situations where people are faced with crowded housing and do not have an alternative. These sites are one of the rapid response tools established to help stop the spread of COVID-19, and can be deployed to communities facing outbreaks. 

The Safe Voluntary Isolation Sites Program directly supports cities, municipalities and health regions that are at-risk of COVID-19 community transmission. Sites selected under the Program provide an accessible location where people can safely self-isolate for the required period. Local public health officials determine eligible people who may be offered the option to transfer to the isolation site on a voluntary basis to keep them and their household contacts safe during an outbreak in their community. 

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