Ontario establishes new COVID-19 restrictions amid dire predictions
TORONTO — Ontario is extending its stay-at-home order to six weeks, restricting interprovincial travel and limiting outdoor gatherings in an effort to fight a losing battle with COVID-19.
It is also closing all non-essential construction and recreational facilities such as tennis courts and playgrounds.
Premier Doug Ford announced the restrictions Friday among several new anti-COVID-19 measures.
“Outdoor gatherings will now be strictly limited to members of your own household only,” he said. “Anyone who lives alone can join with one other household.”
Ford says the province is on its heels as the pandemic slams the province.
Other measures include reduced capacity to only 25 per cent for big box stores and smaller religious gatherings.
“Beginning on Monday, places of worship will be capped at a maximum of 10 people indoors,” said Ford.
“To get ahead of the variants that are plaguing Western Canada, beginning Monday, we’re setting up checkpoints at all interprovincial borders.”
Travellers from Manitoba and Quebec will be screened, he said. Exceptions will be made for essential travel including work, medical care, and transportation of goods.
Ontario has now completed more than 46,000 workplace inspections since the beginning of the pandemic, said Labour Minister Monte McNaughton.
Construction on shopping malls, hotels and office towers will be shut down, he said, while work on essential projects can continue.
Inspectors will begin to visit law offices, accounting firms and other workplaces to ensure public health measures are in place.
“For our employers and employees, take note — this is your last warning,” said McNaughton. “Stay safe everyone.”
With files from OHS Canada