Katie Kroeker, president of the Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, said she is confident that Peninsula businesses “are going above and beyond in their Covid prevention measures” in being eager to welcome tourists and visitors to Vancouver Island.

Katie Kroeker, president of the Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce, said she is confident that Peninsula businesses “are going above and beyond in their Covid prevention measures” in being eager to welcome tourists and visitors to Vancouver Island.

President of Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce questions limits of inter-provincial travel

Katie Kroeker says some tourists loosen up virus prevention measures

The new president of the Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce says she is confident businesses on the Peninsula are meeting their COVID-19 prevention measures as the government contemplates measures including limits on inter-provincial travel.

“We are faced with two opposing tensions — the need to keep our Island residents safe and the need to keep them employed,” said Katie Kroeker, responding to comments from Perrin Beatty, president of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce (CCC).

“Tourism, transportation and hospitality are key sectors that keep our economy healthy, and yet by definition, it means welcoming people to the island which could lead to greater risk of COVID transmission,” she added.

During a virtual meeting Wednesday afternoon with Bruce Williams, CEO of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce, about U.S.-Canada relations in the wake of the pandemic and the inauguration of U.S. President Joe Biden, Beatty said cutting B.C. off from the rest of Canada is not a good idea.

RELATED: Isolating provinces is a bad idea, says Canadian Chamber of Commerce

“What we need to do is to look to manage the disease, not to shut down our regions or to partition Canada more than it is already.”

His comments come after a conference call between Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and several premiers, during which they discussed the issue of inter-provincial travel. B.C. Premier John Horgan later told media that a Maritime-style travel ban is unlikely for the province, voicing skepticism that such a policy was practical or legal.

While the province can impose restrictions on people travelling for non-essential purposes if they are causing harm to the health and safety of British Columbians, much of the current interprovincial travel is work-related and therefore cannot be restricted, said Horgan.

RELATED: Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

Kroeker’s comments reject a choice between reducing travel and public health. While many locals “resonate with the desire for a change of scenery and a break from being housebound,” Kroeker detects a “reflexive, opposing instinct” when thinking about non-locals spending time on the Saanich Peninsula.

“What has been problematic in the past, (have) been tourists who come to the Island thinking it is a safe place to holiday and loosen up their otherwise vigilant prevention practices.”


Do you have a story tip? Email: vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

During a press event on March 6, Const. Alex Berube, media relations officer for the West Shore RCMP, addressed a deadly shooting that occurred in Metchosin the night before. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
VIDEO: One man shot dead in ‘targeted incident’ on Sooke Road

Highway 14 reopens following multi-hour closure for investigation

Victoria man Brett Andersen is asking for people’s help to secure him one of eight free tickets to the moon. (Screenshot/@brettandersen Instagram)
Victoria man wants your help securing a free ticket to the moon

Japanese billionaire offering eight people a trip to the moon

A decade into the 100-year blueprint for restoring the Bowker Creek watershed, Soren Henrich, director of the Friends of Bowker Creek Society, feels positive about the future of conservation and daylighting of the creek. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
Ten years in, Greater Victoria’s 100-year Bowker Creek blueprint gets a boost

Victoria council passes several restoration recommendations

A resurfacing of the tennis court in Metchosin is being eyed for the community. However, funding opportunities still need to be solidified for the project. (Michelle Cabana/Black Press Media)
Renewed surface eyed for Metchosin tennis court

Funding source must first be solidified in order for project to happen

The James C Richardson Pipe Band marches in a Remembrance Day parade on Nov. 11, 2019 in Chilliwack. Wednesday, March 10 is International Bagpipe Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of March 7 to 13

International Bagpipe Day, Wash Your Nose Day and Kidney Day are all coming up this week

The Conservation Officers Service is warning aquarium users after invasive and potentially destructive mussels were found in moss balls from a pet store. (BC Conservation Officers Service/Facebook)
Aquarium users in B.C. warned after invasive mussels found at pet store

Conservation officers were told the mussels were found in a moss ball from a Terrace pet store.

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

Donald Alan Sweet was once an all star CFL kicker who played for the Montreal Alouettes and Montreal Concordes over a 13-year career. Photo courtesy of Mission RCMP.
Ex-B.C. teacher who was CFL kicker charged with assault, sexual crimes against former students

Donald Sweet taught in Mission School District for 10 years, investigators seek further witnesses

(Black Press Media files)
Medicine gardens help Victoria’s Indigenous kids in care stay culturally connected

Traditional plants brought to the homes of Indigenous kids amid the COVID-19 pandemic

Personal protective equipment is seen in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at St. Paul’s hospital in downtown Vancouver. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
$16.9 million invested to improve worker safety, strengthen B.C.’s food supply chain

Money to be used for social distancing, personal protective equipment, cleaning, and air circulation

More than ever before, as pandemic conditions persist, the threat of data breaches and cyberattacks continues to grow, according to SFU professor Michael Parent. (Pixabay photo)
SFU expert unveils 5 ways the COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed cybersecurity

Recognizing these changes is the first in a series of steps to mitigate them once the pandemic ends, and before the next: Michael Parent

Kevin Haughton is the founder/technologist of Courtenay-based Clearflo Solutions. Scott Stanfield photo
Islander aims Clearflo clean drinking water system at Canada’s remote communities

Entrepreneur $300,000 mobile system can produce 50,000 litres of water in a day, via solar energy

Most Read