A look at newly announced public health measures in Ontario
The Ontario government announced Friday a slate of new measures meant to stem a surge in COVID-19 cases in the province. Here's a look at some of what's coming:
FACE COVERINGS EVERYWHERE
For the first time, the government is mandating face coverings in public places throughout the province. Such measures had previously been left up to municipalities, with Premier Doug Ford saying a one-size-fits-all approach didn't make sense in such a vast province.
The province says masks will be mandatory in places such as businesses, facilities and workplaces, with limited exemptions, including corrections and developmental services.
POP THE SOCIAL BUBBLE -- MAYBE
A news release from the government says it is "pausing social circles" and suggesting that all Ontarians only have close contact with those who live in the same household. It says people should maintain a two-metre physical distance from everyone else. Those who live alone, it says, can consider having close contact with another household.
But at a news conference Friday, Ford declined to go that far, saying people should shrink their circles as much as possible.
DROP-IN TESTING NO MORE
COVID-19 assessment centres will stop offering walk-in testing starting Sunday, and in an effort to cut down on a backlog of 90,000 untested swabs, will start offering tests again by appointment-only on Tuesday.
HOT SPOT-SPECIFIC RESTRICTIONS
The province is restricting the number of people able to participate in some indoor activities in Toronto, neighbouring Peel Region and Ottawa, which for weeks have been the epicentres of COVID-19 cases.
Restaurants, bars and nightclubs will be limited to the number of patrons who can maintain at least two metres of physical distancing from every other patron, with a hard cap at 100. No more than six people will be allowed at a table, and each patron must give their name and contact information for optimal physical distancing.
Group exercise classes at gyms will be capped at 10 people, and the total number of people in fitness settings will be limited to 50.
At meeting and event facilities -- such as banquet halls -- there will be a cap of 50 people, with only six people allowed at each table.
- Ontario reports 653 COVID-19 cases as new public health measures take effect
- Ontario tightening public health measures in Peel amid COVID-19 pandemic
- COVID-19: Peel adds 88 new cases as province reports 615
- Ontario to allow families to expand social circles to 10 people
- Province tells people in Mississauga to only celebrate Christmas with members of their own household
- Mississauga men celebrating big lotto wins as the machine froze
- Hamilton Police release photo of suspects accused of killing Tyler Pratt in Stoney Creek
- Here’s where restaurants in Mississauga do their shopping – Mississauga’s Largest Cash and Carry
- Some Mississauga councillors express frustration as Peel’s top doctor recommends city enter the grey/lockdown category this month
- Peel Regional Police officer who shot 16-year-old during Mississauga bank robbery not facing charges: SIU