Ontario premier to make announcement this afternoon as province considers new restrictions
TORONTO -- Premier Doug Ford will make an announcement at Queen's Park this afternoon one day after his cabinet met to discuss possible new restrictions in Ontario.
Ford’s cabinet met on Thursday to discuss the possibility of new public health measures amid a surge in cases and hospitalizations in the province and sources told CTV News and CP24 that items under consideration included shutting down all construction projects that are not deemed critical infrastructure and other limits on non-essential manufacturing and warehouse businesses.
Cabinet also considered introducing fines for non-essential businesses that refuse to let employees work from home when they are able to, sources said.
On Friday, one source confirmed to CP24 that a curfew is likely off the table.
Speaking to CP24 on Friday morning, Toronto Mayor John Tory said he does not believe a curfew would address the real source of COVID-19 transmission in the province but noted that he does not know whether the measure is still something the premier is considering.
“I am not a big fan of it (a curfew) mostly because I think the enforcement question becomes something that is one that has to make you think as to how effective it will be,” Tory told CP24.
“If you really enforce it then you are into a way of life that most of us don't think is consistent with how we live here… if you don't enforce it, then what's the point?”
Tory said he believes that most of the unnecessary movement in the city is occurring during the day and not at night, when a curfew would be in effect.
“It looks to me that the general level of activity is still too high out there. I mean there are still too many people. If you just look at your own traffic cameras that we look at each day... how could those people possibly all be essential workers going to work,” he said.
“I think there are still employers who are not discouraging employees from coming to work… I'm not talking here about essential workers. I am talking about people who really, when you boil it down, don't have to be at work in order for the functioning of their job to continue. They could work from home.”
Tory said he believes people are still taking too many trips to stores each week and going out for things that they don’t necessarily need.
“I think we are still talking about too much activity on the part of people who are going out and not getting the essentials. They are getting things that are clearly not essential,” he said.
Ford will be holding a news conference at 3:30 p.m. Ontario’s solicitor general, health and labour ministers, and the province’s chief medical officer of health will join the premier at the news conference, which will be streamed live on CP24.com.