Full list of new COVID-19 emergency restrictions in Ontario
TORONTO -- The Ontario government has unveiled new public health restrictions as the province faces record-breaking COVID-19 case counts and intensive care admissions.
Ontario Premier Doug Ford made the announcement during a news conference on Friday, saying the province would place restrictions on interprovincial travel, limit outdoor gatherings and allow police to stop people to inquire about their reason for leaving their residence.
CTV News Toronto has compiled a list of the new restrictions here:
- Starting Monday, the province is setting up checkpoints at all interprovincial borders. Ontario will limit access to border crossings between Ontario and Manitoba and Quebec.
- Travellers who are coming into Ontario for work, medical care, transportation of goods and exercising indigenous treaty rights will be exempted.
- The stay-at-home order, which went into effect on April 8 and was expected to last for 28 days, will now be extended for an additional two weeks. It will now be a six-week-long order that will last until May 20 at least.
- Residents must remain at home at all times, with exceptions for essential purposes, such as going to the grocery store or pharmacy, accessing health care services, for exercise or for essential work.
- Businesses across the province must ensure that any employee who can work from home does work from home.
Outdoor gatherings limited
- Starting Saturday, all outdoor social gatherings and organized public events will be prohibited, except with members of the same household. A person who lives alone could gather with one other household.
- All outdoor recreational amenities such as golf courses and basketball courts will be closed. The province originally ordered the closure of all playgrounds, but reversed the decision Saturday afternoon following backlash to the order.
Retail capacity slashed
- Non-essential stores must open no earlier than 7 a.m. and close no later than 8 p.m., including hardware stores, alcohol retailers, and those offering curbside pickup or delivery.
- Capacity limits for in-person shopping in all retail settings where in person shopping is permitted, including supermarkets, grocery stores, convenience stores and stores that primarily sell food and pharmaceutical products, will be limited to 25 per cent capacity.
Places of worship
- Starting Monday, capacity at weddings, funerals and religious services will be limited to 10 people indoors and outdoors.
- Drive-in services will be permitted.
- The government says non-essential construction will close, including construction at shopping malls, hotels and office towers.
- The province says it launched an enhanced provincewide inspection campaign of construction sites, dispatching 200 workplace inspectors, supported by provincial offenses officers, to visit 1,300 constructions sites to enforce COVID-19 safety requirements.
New Enforcement Measures
- If a police officer or other provincial offences officer has reason to suspect that you are participating in an organized public event or social gathering, they may require you to provide information to ensure you are complying with restrictions. Originally, police officers had the authority to randomly stop people and require them to provide their home address and purpose for not being at their residence. Police also had the ability to stop vehicles to inquire about and reason for people leaving their homes. The government later walked back on those orders.
- Provincial offences officers will also be visiting over 500 workplaces this weekend in the COVID-19 hotspots of Ottawa, Toronto and York Region. Their visits will include big-box stores, food processors, manufacturers and warehouses.