Press Releases

Tuesday, April 7, 2020 / Categories: Press Releases

Press Release - Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update for Whitecourt - April 7, 2020

The Town of Whitecourt continues to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic across Alberta, and has been adjusting operations to meet the changing needs of our community.

Help Prevent The Spread

The Town of Whitecourt encourages people in our community to comply with all of the Public Health Orders that have been put into effect in Alberta. Additionally, residents are encouraged to stay home if possible, and to practise physical distancing.  If you need to leave your home, keep at least 6 feet from others when going out for groceries, medical trips and other essential needs. It is important that all Albertans thoroughly wash their hands often, and avoid touching their face, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.

Religious Holidays

Many Albertans are planning to celebrate upcoming religious holidays such as Easter, Passover and Ramadan. The Town of Whitecourt reminds residents that mass gathering restrictions recently implemented by the Province during this public health emergency continue to be in effect and include faith based gatherings.  Residents are encouraged to follow physical distancing practices throughout the holiday season.

Wearing of Non-Medical Masks

As noted in press conferences conducted by the Government of Canada and Alberta on April 6, 2020 wearing a non-medical mask, such as a homemade cloth mask, has not been proven to protect the person wearing it. However, it may be helpful in protecting others around you. The most important steps you can take to prevent the spread of infection are:

  • consistent adherence to good hygiene such as proper hand washing,

  • following all public health orders,

  • staying home whenever possible and practicing physical distancing when you need to go out.

Non-medical masks:

  • should only be used in addition to other protective steps to help prevent the spread such as (washing hands frequently for at least 20 seconds, practicing physically distancing, staying at home),

  • include cloth or homemade masks,

  • are not proven to protect the person wearing it, but may help protect others,

  • cover your mouth and nose to prevent respiratory droplets from contaminating other people or surfaces,

  • must be worn and taken on/off properly as the outside can become contaminated.

For more information on how to wear masks properly visit www.alberta.ca/prevent-the-spread.aspx#p25621s4

Relief Measures

In efforts to support residents and businesses of Whitecourt, Town Council will be proceeding with the following relief measures:

  • Property Tax Deadline – The 2020 Property Tax deadline will be extended to August 31, 2020.  It is anticipated that tax notices will be sent out in May per the normal schedule, but property owners will have an additional two months to make payment.  This deadline extension matches the education tax deadline extension recently announced by the Government of Alberta.  A bylaw amendment will be forwarded to the next Regular Meeting of Council for formal approval.

  • Utility Payment and Penalty Deferral - Payments and penalties for utility accounts will be deferred for a 90-day period to June 30, 2020. Service disconnections will also be deferred for the same time period.  Further details on this relief measure will be published once a bylaw amendment has been approved by Whitecourt Town Council.

COVID-19 information and updates are publicly available on the Alberta Health and Alberta Health Services websites:

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