Victoria asks harbour authority suspend all cruise ship travel to city
VICTORIA -- The City of Victoria will ask the city's harbour authority to suspend all cruise ship traffic to and from the Port of Victoria due to the coronavirus pandemic.
City councillors voted Thursday to ask Transport Canada and the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority to cancel all planned cruise visits to the city until the risk of COVID-19 has subsided.
Coun. Ben Isitt, who serves as the city’s representative to the GVHA, submitted the resolution before Thursday's Committee of the Whole meeting.
Isitt's resolution calls on the harbour authority to “follow the advice of the provincial health officer and suspend authorization for the landing of international cruise ships at the Ogden Point," according to a statement from the city.
On Thursday, cruise operator Princess Cruises announced it was suspending its global operations for 60 days amid the viral outbreak. The company has several planned stops in Victoria in April and May, including the city's first planned cruise ship arrival on April 3.
Isitt's resolution also asks the federal government to help "provide relief to workers and businesses that experience hardship as a result of a postponement of cruise ship visits to the Port of Victoria."
Victoria saw more than one million cruise ship passengers and crew members visit the city in 2019 during more than 250 port stops.