The improved Meyer lemon tree is grown as an ornamental tree, as well as for fruit, and does well in containers. (Monrovia)

Safe, clean campsites to be made available for seasonal fruit pickers in B.C.

One campsite is planned for the Oliver area in the southern Okanagan and two more are slated for Creston

The B.C. government says it is moving to protect residents and seasonal workers from COVID-19 while ensuring the temporary labourers have a safe place to stay as they work in orchards and fields this summer.

A statement from the Ministry of Agriculture says it is providing funds to local governments to create designated campsite accommodations.

The sites would meet health and safety requirements set by the provincial health officer to slow the spread of COVID-19.

One campsite is planned for the Oliver area in the southern Okanagan and two more are slated for Creston in southeastern B.C., with the province providing about $60,000 for each site.

The ministry says seasonal workers must also complete a new online COVID-19 awareness course outlining the rights and responsibilities of employers and workers to meet B.C.’s pandemic-related rules.

Camping accommodations are also being explored in Summerland, Osoyoos, Naramata and the Similkameen.

Agriculture Minister Lana Popham says creation of the campsites is a step toward ensuring community safety as well as the safety of seasonal workers, who are a “crucial part” of B.C.’s food supply system.

“Our government is protecting these workers and local residents by making sure workers have a safe place to camp and are educated on the rules and guidelines Dr. Bonnie Henry has put in place here in British Columbia,” Popham says in the statement.

The COVID-19 awareness course for seasonal workers includes information on physical distancing, hygiene and cleaning, work pods, transportation, tools and equipment, as well as safeguarding and monitoring health, the ministry says.

The course must be completed by any seasonal worker planning to stay at the campsites.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Seabird Island community to recieve $2.1 million for community centre

Provincial, federal funding will contribute to local undertaking

Popular retired UFV therapy dog passes away

Mac the Therapy Dog consoled countless students and staff, as well as wildfire victims

Imagination Library Fraser Valley celebrating Christmas in July

Dolly Parton early literacy intiative looking for financial support to help with waitlist

Community Camera: July 9, 2020

Submit your photos through our website

Gryfalcon missing in Agassiz

Escaped from a falcon breeding centre, last seen near McCallum Road

B.C. sees 25 new COVID-19 cases, community exposure tracked

One death, outbreaks remain in two long-term care facilities

B.C. Ferries increasing passenger capacity after COVID-19 restrictions

Transport Canada 50-per-cent limit being phased out, no current plans to provide masks

Once-in-a-lifetime comet photographed soaring over Abbotsford

Photographer Randy Small captures Comet NEOWISE in early-morning sky

Four-vehicle collision snarls eastbound highway traffic in Fraser Valley

Collision west of Lickman Road on Highway 1 includes three vehicles plus motorcycle

BREAKING: Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

Bringing support to Indigenous students and communities, while fulfilling a dream

Mitacs is a nonprofit organization that operates research and training programs

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

Man shot dead in east Abbotsford suburbs

Integrated Homicide Investigative Team called to investigate

Most Read