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[COVID-19]: Declaration of a state of emergency - Important details from the province on today's declaration of a state of emergency. Please read and ensure you do your part to help flatten the curve.

Nova Scotia declared a provincial state of emergency to help contain the spread of #COVID19. Nova Scotians should not leave the province and only leave home for essential items and services. A state of emergency gives government broad powers to do whatever is necessary for the safety and protection of Nova Scotians.

Nova Scotia borders will tighten to travellers and all entry points (land, sea, air) will be closely managed starting tomorrow, March 23, at 6 a.m. Anyone entering the province will be stopped, questioned and told to self-isolate for 14 days.

Travel exemptions include:
- healthy workers in trades and transportations sectors who move goods and people (e.g. truck drivers)
- healthy people going to work (e.g. health-care workers)
- people travelling into the province for essential health services (e.g. chemotherapy treatment)

Effectively immediately, provincial parks, beaches and tourist attractions are closed. Provincial trails will remain open for exercise. Gathering limits and social distancing guidelines must be followed.

Police will be authorized to enforce orders under the Health Protection Act. If Nova Scotians and businesses do not practice social distancing and self-isolation, they will face fines of $1,000 for individuals and $7,500 for businesses.

Police can also enforce offences under the Emergency Management Act. For example, fines for charging higher than fair market prices for goods and services.

There are several groups who are essential and exempt from gathering limits. They include but are not limited to grocery stores, gas stations and pharmacies. If possible, one person per family should be designated to do these tasks. Others exempt from gathering limits include construction sites, health-care services, community services (e.g. child protection) and criminal justice services and law enforcement.

Effectively immediately, social gatherings of more than five people are prohibited. Any workplace or business that is not deemed essential can remain open as long as a two-metre distance can be maintained.

Dentists can no longer practice dentistry in their offices unless they deem it necessary to perform an emergency dental procedure in the best interest of the patient’s health (in effect March 21).

Do not call 911 to report individuals who are not self-isolating or social distancing. 911 is for emergency or life-threatening situations only. If you feel someone is not self-isolating or social distancing, first have a polite conversation with them. They may need support. If that fails and they are still not self-isolating or social distancing, call your local law enforcement non-emergency line.

There are seven new cases of COVID-19 in Nova Scotia, all travel-related or connected to people who have travelled.

There are 28 positive cases of #COVID19 in NS, ranging in age from late-teens to mid-70’s. To date, Nova Scotia has 28 positive test results and 2088 negative cases. Testing results are updated daily at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/#cases

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