Restaurants would be fully open in Mississauga, Brampton if Ontario kept colour-coded COVID-19 framework

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Published June 25, 2021 at 10:41 pm

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It appears restaurants and gyms in Mississauga and Brampton are getting the short end of the stick as Ontario enters Step 2 of its reopening plan.

One effect of COVID-19 pandemic stress is that it probably shortens the collective memory, since every day can feel like a marathon. But it is worth pointing out that under the province’s old colour-coded framework, restaurants would be allowed to offer dine-in options and gyms would be open.

As a brief refresher, from early November 2020 until April, Ontario had a colour-coded COVID-19 restrictions framework. That was eliminated in April, after the province plunged into the third wave of COVID-19.

There were two main criteria to be in Level Yellow — Protect, which had no restrictions. The first was a weekly incidence rate of 10 to 24.9 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 popullation. The second was a positivity rate of 0.5 to 1.2 per cent. 

Areas of Ontario that have been considered pandemic superstars — Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox & Addington, Renfrew County near Ottawa, and some other public health units in areas of central-western and northern Ontario — were at that level. 

It is worth keeping in mind that this was in a period before vaccinations began in Ontario. That is a far cry from having more than 75 per cent of people aged 12 and over with one dose of COVID-19 vaccine, and second-dose coverage for over 20 per cent of adults.

Peel Region has, by any measure, gotten a handle on COVID-19 situation. The area’s case count has dropped into the low 20s per 100,000 population, according to information furnished by Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie. via an Instagram story.

“We’re continuing to see huge improvement across the board in our fight against COVID-19,” Crombie stated on Friday. “Peel Region is now averaging 21 cases per 100,000 (people), and that’s down from 37 last week. Mississauga is now averaging 20 cases per 100,000, and that’s down from 34 last week.

“This is incredible progress from where we were just two months ago, when we were averaging 10 times the number of cases that we have today.”

The mayor also pointed out on Friday that intensive-care unit numbers are far lower than they were in April and May.

And as far back as nearly two weeks ago of June 13, Peel’s positvity rate was just north of 2 per cent and was trending downward,  according to ICEs.on.ca, a not-for-profit research centre.

Mississauga and Brampton’s numbers, and vaccination coverage, have obviously travelled light-years since the darkest depths of the third wave three months ago, in mid-April, when it had 280 cases per 100,000 and a positivity rate north of 20 per cent.

The numbers point to a conclusion that the region’s people might deserve the reward of dining in and being able work out indoors. It is said that carrots work better than sticks..

(Graphic via ICES.on.ca.)

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