COVID-19 Archive

Last updated January 12, 2021

On March 17, 2020, the Province of BC declared a state of emergency to support the provincewide response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. This transformed our lives and the District responded with messaging and action. While the pandemic is continuing, there is hope on the horizon. The first round of COVID-19 vaccinations began the week of December 14, 2020.

The messages below capture some of our journey during this period.

District messages

District Response

  • On May 25, 2020, the District announced that the Municipal Hall will re-open to the public on June 1, 2020, with social distancing measures in place. For all services, other than tax payments, residents are encouraged to first phone (250.642.1634) the District and book an appointment. This will help reduce exposure to other residents in the reception area, reduce wait times and ensure staff availability and readiness.
  • The District activated an Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) on March 13th to monitor directives from Provincial and Federal Ministries, and streamline communications; on March 19th the EOC was ramped up to a Level 2 response to support advance planning.
  • District Bylaw Officers step up to aid in education and warnings to residents regarding business and parks closures, social distancing and public gatherings.
  • A dedicated web page for small businesses and essential resources launched on District of Sooke website. #ChooseSooke and support local business.
  • Open Air burning prohibited (effective March 26) until further notice – this includes ALL backyard burning and Class A burns (land clearing). Small campfires still permitted (clean, split wood only in a contained ring, maximum 2 feet in diameter). A reminder that dumping yard waste in public parks or spaces is prohibited – residents are asked to compost yard debris at this time.
  • The Fire Department has developed response protocols for first responders to limit exposure and mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
  • Car seat installation service at Sooke Fire Rescue on hold: The Fire Department has put the car seat installation program on hold until further notice as the service cannot be offered while adhering to the advice of public health officers.
  • Building inspections are being conducted virtually, where possible (photos and video may be accepted), and onsite when buildings are not occupied at the discretion of the Building Official. Contact to inquire about options.
  • Discussions on support to business are currently taking place at the local, provincial and federal government levels.
  • Return to Work During Covid-19 Policy
  • Frequently Asked Question – NEW Temporary Homeless Shelter (associated News Release available here)
  • Sooke Fire Rescue launches drive-by birthday program for residents under 12 or over 75 who need help celebrating a birthday during these times of social distancing. Celebrate with lights and sirens! Until May 31, 2020, Sooke Fire Rescue Department is accepting requests to drive past local homes and recognize that special day. Submit a request and you will be contacted by Sooke Fire Rescue Department to coordinate the details.


In a Provincial State of Emergency, the Provincial Health Officer can make orders as needed. All must follow the orders. For a complete listing of orders in please see here and note orders in place include:

  • 2020_M082 – Bylaw Officer
  • 2020_M083 – Local Government meetings
  • 2020_M084 –  Local Authorities and Essential Goods and Supplies


Please refer to organizations/agencies for the latest information.