B.C. allows longer liquor-store hours to help seniors follow social-distancing

Liquor stores in B.C. are now allowed to stay open longer to provide more opportunities to practice physical-distancing under the COVID-19 pandemic.

The government is suggesting the earlier hours could be used for seniors at private liquor stores but it is at their discretion.

Government liquor stores will not be putting in seniors-only hours.

The new policies are in effect until July 15. Liquor retailers are not required to change hours if they were previously reduced.

“These time-limited measures should provide seniors and immunocompromised populations the opportunity to buy liquor during early shopping hours already being provided by other retailers, such as grocery stores,” a news release reads.

The changes come as B.C.’s beverage alcohol producers launch a buy-local campaign called Time to Buy British Columbia!

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The initiative represents the alcohol sector, but could expand to other businesses that locate their activities, management jobs and workers’ jobs in B.C.

“As alcohol producers, we employ thousands of British Columbians and we are now challenged with workforce layoffs or, for some, even closures,” said Ken Beattie, executive director for the B.C. Craft Brewers Guild.

“When B.C. emerges from the pandemic, British Columbians will want to return to normal lives, and we will want to rehire them and to rebuild business.”

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