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Premier-designate Tim Houston, left, attends his first COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Robert Strang, chief medical officer of health, after the Progressive Conservatives won last week's provincial election, in Halifax on Aug. 23Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press

Nova Scotia’s premier says the province won’t initially set up an enforcement team to ensure compliance with rules requiring people to show proof of vaccination documents for many non-essential activities.

As of Oct. 4, people 12 and older will be expected to provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 in order to attend restaurants, gyms, theatres, concerts and sporting events.

Tim Houston told reporters today he’s had a positive response from the various industries and the general population about the plan, and his government will work with companies on any issues that may arise.

However, he said initially the province has no plans to have a roving enforcement team to ensure compliance with the new rule, as he expects businesses will voluntarily adopt measures to check people’s vaccine documents.

He says for now, public health emails and mailed documents indicating full vaccination will suffice, but there are plans afoot to create a more standard and secure document that meets national standards still being developed in Ottawa.

Public health officials have said that as other public health restrictions are loosened, the vaccine policy will make non-essential gatherings far safer, as vaccination significantly reduces the risk of an outbreak.

The province has already announced it will move to the final phase of its pandemic recovery plan next Wednesday, which involves removing most of the public health measures that have been in place, including mandatory indoor masking.

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