GNT: COVID-19 temporary orders to be extended, new public health order anticipated

Press Release

YELLOWKNIFE, October 14, 2021 – The Chief Public Health Officer (OCPHO) is announcing an extension to the Covid-19 Gatherings Order-Yellowknife, Dettah, and N’dilǫ today. The Behchokǫ̀ containment order is also being extended. Both have been extended until Friday October 22, 2021 at 5:00PM.

The basis for the extensions is ongoing community transmission of COVID-19 cases in Behchokǫ̀ and Yellowknife, Dettah and N’dilǫ. With respect to the COVID-19 Gatherings Order for Yellowknife, Dettah, and N’dilǫ ,there are multiple workplace and institutional outbreaks, and high-risk exposures that continue to create additional public health risk.

For more information please see: Containment and Gathering Orders FAQs.

New Public Health Order

The CPHO is also announcing the intention of introducing a new Public Health Order when the temporary restrictions end next week. The new order will introduce a new territory-wide gatherings order:

  • No more than 25 people indoors
  • No more than 50 people outdoors

However, the new order will also include a proof of vaccination option as a way to mitigate risk within non-essential businesses and organizations. The new option could allow for larger gatherings with less distancing as long as those that are eligible to receive a vaccine can provide proof of vaccination. This means that those that are ineligible, such as children under the age of 12, would still be able to participate in these activities and attend at these businesses.

Larger gatherings would be then be limited to 100 people indoors and 200 people outdoors. All non-essential businesses or organizations who wish to exceed the 25 person indoors and 50 person outdoors limits or wish to participate in high risk activities will need to apply or re-apply for applications to vary from this new order.

For more information please see Proof of Vaccination for Gatherings FAQs

A determination will still need to be made by the CPHO before proceeding with this new order based on a risk evaluation done closer to October 22, 2021.

Further Recommendations

The following are CPHO recommendations that will assist residents to make responsible choices, assess personal risk, and help to decrease community spread in NWT communities:

  • Get vaccinated: Vaccines reduce your risk of getting COVID-19, suffering more severe effects if you do get COVID-19 and keeps your community safer.
  • Avoid non-essential travel: You determine what is essential by deciding how much risk you are willing to take when it comes to COVID-19 and introducing it into another community. The CPHO highly encourages keeping medical appointments. If you must travel the CPHO recommends getting tested on Day 1 after arriving at your destination and on Day 8.
  • Work from Home: If possible, employers working within communities with temporary public health orders should encourage employees to work from home at this time.
  • Stay Home When Sick: If you feel unwell, even a mild symptom of COVID-19, please stay home and seek testing right away. We are all at risk for COVID-19 regardless if you are vaccinated or not and we do not want to spread the disease to someone who might suffer from severe health outcomes


All commentary is attributable to Dr. Kami Kandola, Chief Public Health Officer for the Northwest Territories.

Relevant Links

Media Contact

COVID Communications
COVID-19 Coordinating Secretariat
Department of Health and Social Services
Government of the Northwest Territories
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