Hamilton will be permitted to enter Stage 3 of Ontario’s reopening plan

Published July 20, 2020 at 5:28 pm

Hamilton will be moving into Stage 3 this week.

Hamilton will be moving into Stage 3 this week.

“We’re working with communities across the province to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and help more businesses safely and responsibly hang up their ‘Open for Business’ sign,” said Premier Doug Ford. 

“While we want as many people back to work and taking home a paycheque again as possible, it’s important for everyone ― no matter what stage your community is in ― to remain on guard and keep following the public health advice. By working together, we can keep new case numbers down and ensure all of Ontario can enter Stage 3 when it’s safe to do so.”

The following public health units will be allowed to move into Stage 3 on Friday, July 24, 2020, at 12:01 a.m.:

  • Durham Region Health Department
  • Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit
  • Halton Region Health Department
  • Hamilton Public Health Services
  • Lambton Health Unit
  • Niagara Region Public Health Department
  • York Region Public Health Services

The following regions will remain in Stage 2 for now: 

  • Peel Public Health
  • Toronto Public Health
  • Windsor-Essex County Health Unit

The province said the decision to move more GTA municipalities into Stage 3 was made in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health and is based on a number of factors, including lower or low transmission of COVID-19, ongoing hospital capacity, ability to conduct rapid case and contact management, and a significant increase in testing.

Ford told reporters that the Ontario-made contact tracing app could be out as soon as this Friday. 

For regions in Stage 3, gathering limits will increase to a maximum of 50 people indoors and a maximum of 100 people outdoors, with physical distancing in place. Gathering limits apply to all social gatherings and events, as well as some higher-risk activities and venues. Gathering limits do not apply to settings such as beaches, parks, restaurants and bars, but measures to enable physical distancing may limit capacity at any given time.

Regions in Stage 3 will be permitted to allow indoor drinking and dining with physical distancing measures in place. Fitness facilities, movie theatres, and casinos are also permitted to reopen.

“Building on the success of the regional approach in the previous two stages and based on the positive public health trends we are seeing, we are ready to move more regions across the province into Stage 3,” said Health Minister Christine Elliott. 

“Entering stage 3 does not mean the fight against COVID-19 is over. We all must remain vigilant and continue following public health advice to ensure the progress we have made so far in stopping the spread will not be undone.”

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