FREDERICTON (GNB) – Legislative amendments have been introduced to the Emergency Measures Act.

The amendments to the act would:

  • Make it clear that cabinet has the authority to suspend, amend or supersede the operation of provisions of any public act, regulation, rule, municipal bylaw or order during a state of emergency.
  • Protect people and corporations that provide essential services and take reasonable precautions from liability for damages during a state of emergency.
  • Increase to $5,000 the minimum fine for a corporation violating or failing to comply with a direction, order or requirement made under the Emergency Measures Act.
  • Require organizations providing critical infrastructure services to prepare emergency plans and submit them to the Emergency Measures Organization for review.
  • Make it clear that peace officers have the authority to stop people, request documentation and conduct investigations in support of enforcing an emergency order during a state of emergency.

“These changes will improve our ability to support measures to contain and prevent the spread of COVID-19,” said Public Safety Minister Carl Urquhart. “These measures would be part of mandatory orders like those we are currently using that support the efforts of the chief medical officer of health and are regularly reviewed by the all-party cabinet committee on COVID-19 and cabinet.”

 “Everyone has a role to play in following the advice and being vigilant. Your actions do not just impact yourself but also others in the community,” Urquhart said. “This situation is challenging for everyone, but we are taking steps to protect New Brunswickers.”