Submitted by Karen De Santana on
The Government of Ontario in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Public Health Measures Table, and local medical officers of health and other health experts, the Ontario government is introducing additional targeted public health measures in the Ottawa, Peel, and Toronto public health unit regions. These modified Stage 2 restrictions will be for a minimum of 28 days and reviewed on an ongoing basis.
Effective Saturday, October 10, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., these targeted measures are being implemented in Ottawa, Peel, and Toronto as a result of their higher than average rates of transmission. Measures under a modified Stage 2 include:
- - Reducing limits for all social gatherings and organized public events to a maximum of 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors where physical distancing can be maintained. The two limits may not be combined for an indoor-outdoor event;
- - Prohibiting indoor food and drink service in restaurants, bars and other food and drink establishments, including nightclubs and food court areas in malls;
- - Closing of:
- - Indoor gyms and fitness centres (i.e., exercise classes and weight and exercise rooms);
- - Casinos, bingo halls and other gaming establishments;
- - Indoor cinemas;
- - Performing arts centres and venues;
- - Spectator areas in racing venues;
- - Interactive exhibits or exhibits with high risk of personal contact in museums, galleries, zoos, science centres, landmarks, etc.;
- - Prohibiting personal care services where face coverings must be removed for the service (e.g. makeup application, beard trimming)
- - Prohibiting personal care services where face coverings must be removed for the service (e.g. makeup application, beard trimming);
- - Reducing the capacity limits for:
- - Meeting and event spaces to 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors,
- - Tour and guide services to 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors
- - Real estate open houses to 10 people indoors, where physical distancing can be maintained.
- - In-person teaching and instruction (e.g. cooking class) to 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors, with exemptions for schools, child care centres, universities, colleges of applied arts and technology, private career colleges, the Ontario Police College, etc. and
- - Limiting team sports to training sessions (no games or scrimmages).
Schools, child care centres, and places of worship will remain open in these communities and must continue to follow the public health measures in place. Before-school and after-school programs will also be exempt from these new restrictions.
Wedding Receptions for this weekend
Given the extraordinary costs associated with these functions, wedding receptions scheduled for this weekend may proceed under existing public health rules. Effective Tuesday, October 13, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., updated public health measures will apply to wedding receptions, including new gathering limits of 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors at event spaces.
In addition to the measures being implemented in the Ottawa, Peel, and Toronto public health unit regions, the Chief Medical Officer of Health is also urging all Ontarians to:
- - Limit trips outside of home, except for essential purposes only such as work where it is not possible to work from home, school, grocery shopping, medical appointments, and outdoor healthy physical activity. In addition, travel to other regions in the province, especially from higher transmission to lower transmission areas, should only be for essential purposes;
- - Practise physical distancing of at least two metres with those outside your household;
- - Wear a face covering when physical distancing is a challenge or where it is mandatory to do so; and
- - Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly; and following gathering limits and rules.
As these necessary public health measures come at a cost to small businesses, Ontario has planned to and will make $300 million available to assist significantly affected businesses with fixed costs, including property taxes, hydro and natural gas bills.
This support will be provided by the province and will be made available in any region where these measures are necessary. More details will be released in the coming days.
This funding builds on the actions the government has taken to support small businesses throughout the pandemic, including putting in place a temporary moratorium on commercial evictions, making $60 million available for a $1,000 grant for small businesses to offset the cost of personal protective equipment (PPE), and exploring options to permanently allow restaurants and bars to include alcohol with food as part of a takeout or delivery order