Canadians, Americans and people across the globe are calling out those who fail to practise social distancing, using the hashtags "#Covidiot" and “#Covidiots,” as fears about the spread of COVID-19 continue.
On Friday, March 20, the City of Vancouver and Vancouver Park Board announced more than 160 playgrounds in parks would close as the number of cases of the virus continued to increase across Canada and B.C.
In Canada there are 1,302 cases — 424 in B.C., which has the highest number in the country.
In Vancouver, some residents continued to gather at parks, the beach, the seawall and playgrounds this weekend despite warnings that staying at home or remaining at least six-feet apart are necessary to curb coronavirus cases. The park board has even posted signs reminding people not to gather in groups.
On Saturday Vancouver Coun. Sarah Kirby-Yung tagged the Vancouver Park Board on social media, asking it to shut down Andy Livingstone Park after CBC reporter Justin McElroy posted a video of soccer players ignoring health officials’ social distancing advice.
On Sunday, March 22, park board general manager Malcolm Bromley posted a video online showing staff removing logs from beaches to discourage people sitting close to one another.
Basketball hoops at Kits Beach are also being taken down, while measures are being taken to limit access to other outdoor recreation facilities in Vancouver as well.
COVID-19 Need to Know:— Vancouver Park Board (@ParkBoard) March 21, 2020
We have closed basketball and volleyball courts in parks and beaches. Our crews are working hard to access each of the courts in a timely fashion. Please help us spread the word and please do your part by staying off courts.#Vancouver pic.twitter.com/iSgsCk70Ci
Looks like they are taking down the basketball hoops at Kits Beach. Thank you @CityofVancouver @ParkBoard for making the right decision. (Photo shared by a friend Sunday morning.) pic.twitter.com/OldDBkBFuh— FionaForbes (@FionaForbes) March 22, 2020
Even Quarry Rock in Deep Cove and Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge were closed as of Sunday morning because visitors were failing to “keep 2 metres' distance, despite signs and staff enforcing physical distancing at trail entrances,” the District of North Vancouver announced.
Quarry Rock and Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge closed until further notice, enforced as of 7 a.m. Sunday, March 22. Visitors are not following provincial health officer orders to keep 2 metres' distance, despite signs and staff enforcing physical distancing at trail entrances. pic.twitter.com/YegUS910Vf— District of North Vancouver (@NVanDistrict) March 21, 2020
That decision seemed to be having an effect on visitors to the area late Sunday morning.
This is the parking lot at a local #DeepCove school right now. Yesterday, it was full of people parking to hike the #QuarryRock that's now CLOSED. I hope it stays empty. We are not on vacation. #StayHomeCanada #COVIDー19 #NorthVancouver pic.twitter.com/31nMP8NkC9— Fiona Hughes (@HughesFiona) March 22, 2020
Federal health officials warned March 22 fines and arrests may be imposed if the problem continues. The Emergency Measures Act is on the table, according to Canada’s Health Minister Patty Hajdu.