Ontario Extending Emergency Orders During COVID-19 Outbreak - May 27, 2020
The Ontario government continues to protect the health and safety of the public during the COVID-19 outbreak by extending all emergency orders in force under s.7.0.2 (4) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act.
Current emergency orders include the closure of outdoor playgrounds, play structures and equipment, public swimming pools and outdoor water facilities, as well as bars and restaurants except for takeout and delivery. Additionally, there continues to be restrictions on social gatherings of more than five people, and staff redeployment rules remain in place for long-term care homes and congregate settings like retirement homes and women’s shelters.
To read the full media release, visit: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/05/ontario-extending-emergency-orders-during-covid-19-outbreak.html
As Ontario Reopens, People Urged to Continue Following Public Health Advice - May 20, 2020
Face coverings now recommended when physical distancing is a challenge
As the Ontario government carefully and gradually reopens the province, those taking public transit, returning to work or going out shopping are being urged to continue to adhere to public health advice as the best line of defence against COVID-19. To assist the public, the Ministry of Health today released specific recommendations on how to choose, wear and care for appropriate face coverings used in public where physical distancing is not possible, along with additional safety measures for provincial transit agencies.
Since the beginning of the outbreak, Dr. David Williams, Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, has advised people to wash their hands often, stay at home if feeling ill, and practise physical distancing by staying at least two metres apart from anyone outside their household. Now that the province is reopening, the Chief Medical Officer of Health and other health experts are recommending that individuals wear a face covering where physical distancing is not possible, such as on public transit or in a small grocery store or pharmacy. In order to assist people and reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19, the Ministry of Health released the following face covering recommendations:
- Wear your face covering safely and snugly to cover your nose and mouth, without any gaps. Ensure your face covering is made of at least two layers of tightly woven material and can be cleaned multiple times without losing its shape;
- Medical masks, such as surgical and N95 masks, should be reserved for use by health care workers, those providing direct care, first responders and individuals who are ill and must leave their home for essential reasons such as seeking medical care, picking up medication or groceries;
- Face coverings should not be placed on or used by children under the age of two; anyone who has trouble breathing; and anyone who is unable to remove it without assistance.
To view the full media release, visit: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/05/as-ontario-reopens-people-urged-to-continue-following-basic-public-health-measures.html
Health and Safety Top Priority as Schools Remain Closed - May 19, 2020
The Ontario government is protecting the health and safety of students during the COVID-19 outbreak by keeping schools closed for the rest of this school year. This decision was made after consulting with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, health experts on the COVID-19 Command Table, and medical experts at The Hospital for Sick Children. At the same time, the government is planning for the reopening of schools for the 2020-21 school year, the gradual reopening of child care, and the opening of summer day camps subject to the continuing progress in trends of key public health indicators.
All students who were on track to graduate from secondary school before the initial school closure order was made in March will be able to graduate, and all students will receive report cards.
Later this summer, the government will announce a plan to strengthen learning and safety protocols to enable students and staff to return to in-class instruction for the 2020-21 school year. That plan will be bolstered by an enhanced province-wide virtual learning program that will allow all students to learn, regardless of the challenges that may transpire in the coming months.
To view the full media release, visit: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/05/health-and-safety-top-priority-as-schools-remain-closed.html
Ontario Extends Emergency Orders to Keep People Safe - May 19, 2020
The Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, has extended all emergency orders currently in force until May 29, 2020. That includes the closure of bars and restaurants except for takeout and delivery only, restrictions on social gatherings of more than five people, and staff redeployment rules for long-term care homes and congregate settings like retirement homes and women’s shelters. The government is also allowing drive-in religious gatherings.
Today, the province officially enters the first stage of its Framework for Reopening the Province. As part of this initial stage, the government is permitting the reopening of some outdoor recreational amenities, including outdoor sports facilities and multi-use fields, off-leash dog areas, and outdoor picnic sites, benches and shelters in parks and recreational areas, effective as of Tuesday, May 19, 2020.
Outdoor playgrounds, play structures and equipment, fitness equipment, public swimming pools, splash pads and similar outdoor water facilities will remain closed until later stages of the province’s reopening plan.
To view the full media release, visit: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/05/ontario-extends-emergency-orders-to-keep-people-safe.html
Ontario Provides $3.3 Billion More to Increase Health Care Capacity - March 26, 2020
The Ontario government is providing an additional $3.3 billion to support frontline health care workers and increase health care capacity in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. This funding will allow the province to take immediate action to increase the number of assessment centres, add more acute care and critical care beds, improve testing and provide more protective equipment for frontline workers.
Ontario's Action Plan: Responding to COVID‑19 includes $2.1 billion in new and urgent funding to combat and contain the spread of COVID-19, as well as $1.2 billion to continue the government's long-term plan to build a health care system that is there for patients when and where they need it.
For more details please visit:
Ontario's Action Plan: Responding to COVID-19 - March 25, 2020
Finance Minister Rod Phillips released Ontario's Action Plan: Responding to COVID-19 (March 2020 Economic and Fiscal Update).
The government's action plan is a first step in its response to COVID-19 and includes $7 billion in additional resources for the health care system and direct support for people and jobs. It also will make available $10 billion in support for people and businesses through tax and other deferrals to improve their cash flow, protecting jobs and household budgets.
This $17 billion response is a critical first step to ensure our health care system, communities and economy are positioned to weather the challenges ahead. The plan includes historic levels of prudence, including a dedicated $1 billion COVID-19 contingency fund, as part of the additional health care investments, as well as an unprecedented $2.5 billion reserve and an increased contingency fund of $1.3 billion to provide continued flexibility to respond to changing global circumstances.
The plan includes $3.3 billion in additional health care resources to protect the health and well-being of the people of Ontario.
For full details, please visit:
Ontario Announces Additional Workplaces that Can Reopen - May 14, 2020
Today, the Ontario government announced the retailers, seasonal businesses and health and community service providers who will be permitted to open or expand their services on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., provided that the general trend on health indicators continues to improve as part of the first stage of the government's reopening framework. The workplaces opening as part this stage are well-positioned to put workplace safety measures in place and get more people back to work, while not overburdening public transit and other services.
The government also announced additional seasonal services and activities will be permitted to open as early as Saturday May 16, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., in time for the Victoria Day long weekend, as key public health indicators continue to show progress.
As soon as 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, May 16, 2020:
- Golf courses will be able to open, with clubhouses open only for washrooms and restaurants open only for take-out.
- Marinas, boat clubs and public boat launches may open for recreational use.
- Private parks and campgrounds may open to enable preparation for the season and to allow access for trailers and recreational vehicles whose owners have a full season contract.
- Businesses that board animals, such as stables, may allow boarders to visit, care for or ride their animal.
The government's responsible and measured approach to reopening will allow business owners and service provider's time to ensure workplaces are safe for staff, consumers and the general public. Assuming trends in key public health indicators continue to improve, Ontario's first stage of reopening will begin on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 12:01 a.m. and will include:
- Retail services that are not in shopping malls and have separate street-front entrances with measures in place that can enable physical distancing, such as limiting the number of customers in the store at any one time and booking appointments beforehand or on the spot.
- Seasonal businesses and recreational activities for individual or single competitors, including training and sport competitions conducted by a recognized national or provincial sport organization. This includes indoor and outdoor non-team sport competitions that can be played while maintaining physical distancing and without spectators, such as tennis, track and field and horse racing.
- Animal services, specifically pet care services, such as grooming and training, and regular veterinary appointments.
- Indoor and outdoor household services that can follow public health guidelines, such as housekeepers, cooks, cleaning and maintenance.
- Lifting essential workplace limits on construction.
- Allowing certain health and medical services to resume, such as in-person counselling and scheduled surgeries based on the ability to meet pre-specified conditions as outlined in A Measured Approach to Planning for Surgeries and Procedures During the COVID-19 Pandemic, as well as resuming professional services such as shifting Children's Treatment Centres from virtual to in-person.
To view the full media release, please visit: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/05/ontario-announces-additional-workplaces-that-can-reopen.html
Declaration of Emergency Extended While Ontario Gradually Reopens the Economy - May 12, 2020
New legislation will allow for more virtual or remote transactions during COVID-19
The Ontario government is extending the Declaration of Emergency under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act. This additional time will ensure the province has the necessary tools and health care capacity to contain COVID-19, while gradually reopening businesses, services, and amenities safely.
Passed during a special sitting of the Ontario Legislature today, the Declaration of Emergency has been extended until June 2. The declaration will allow Ontario to continue to enforce current emergency orders, such as restricting retirement and long-term care home employees from working in more than one facility and prohibiting events and gatherings of more than five people. Since the emergency was first declared on March 17, the government has taken over 150 actions to help protect individuals, families, and businesses from the impacts of COVID-19.
A full list of emergency orders can be found on the e-Laws website, under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act.
To read the full media release, visit: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/05/declaration-of-emergency-extended-while-ontario-gradually-reopens-the-economy.html
Ontario Further Eases Restrictions on Retail Stores and Essential Construction During COVID-19 - May 6, 2020
The Ontario government is allowing all retail stores with a street entrance to provide curbside pickup and delivery, as well as in-store payment and purchases at garden centres, nurseries, hardware stores and safety supply stores. The business owners should review the health and safety guidelines developed by the province and its health and safety association partners.
As early as Friday, May 8 at 12:01 a.m., garden centres and nurseries will be able to open for in-store payment and purchases, operating under the same guidelines as grocery stores and pharmacies. Hardware stores and safety supply stores will be permitted to open for in-store payment and purchases as soon as 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, May 9. On Monday, May 11 at 12:01 a.m., retail stores with a street entrance can begin offering curbside pickup and delivery, in accordance with the Ministry of Health's Guidance Document for Essential Workplaces and occupational health and safety requirements.
In addition to easing restrictions on retail, the government is also expanding essential construction to allow below-grade multi-unit residential construction projects like apartments and condominiums to begin and existing above-grade projects to continue. This will help clear the way for the housing and jobs our economy will need to support economic recovery from the impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak.
For full details, please read the media release here: https://www.news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/05/ontario-further-eases-restrictions-on-retail-stores-and-essential-construction-during-covid-19.html
Ontario Extends Emergency Orders and Electricity Rate Relief During COVID-19 - May 6, 2020
The Ontario government is extending emergency electricity rate relief to families, farms and small businesses until May 31, 2020 during the COVID-19 outbreak. Customers who pay time-of-use electricity rates will continue to be billed at the lowest price, known as the off-peak price, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. This electricity rate relief, initially provided for a 45-day period starting on March 24, 2020, has been extended by an emergency order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act. The rate relief is intended to be in place for an additional 24 days.
On the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ontario government is also extending all emergency orders that have been put in place to-date under s.7.0.2 (4) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act until May 19, 2020.
For full details on the emergency orders, visit: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/05/ontario-extends-electricity-rate-relief-during-covid-19.html
Ontario Government: Certain Businesses Allowed to Reopen Under Strict Safety Guidelines - May 1
Steady Decrease in COVID-19 Cases Required Before Beginning Next Stage of Reopening
The Ontario government is allowing certain businesses and workplaces to reopen as long as they comply with strict public health measures and operate safely during the COVID-19 outbreak. Those permitted to start up include seasonal businesses and some essential construction projects.
By following the proper health and safety guidelines these businesses will be permitted to begin operations on Monday, May 4 at 12:01 a.m.:
- Garden centres and nurseries with curbside pick-up and delivery only;
- Lawn care and landscaping;
- Additional essential construction projects that include:
- shipping and logistics;
- broadband, telecommunications, and digital infrastructure;
- any other project that supports the improved delivery of goods and services;
- municipal projects;
- colleges and universities;
- child care centres;
- schools; and
- site preparation, excavation, and servicing for institutional, commercial, industrial and residential development;
- Automatic and self-serve car washes;
- Auto dealerships, open by appointment only;
- Golf courses may prepare their courses for the upcoming season, but not open to the public; and
- Marinas may also begin preparations for the recreational boating season by servicing boats and other watercraft and placing boats in the water, but not open to the public. Boats and watercraft must be secured to a dock in the marina until public access is allowed.
To read the full media release from the Province, visit:
For an up-to-date list of essential workplaces and businesses permitted to operate, visit: https://www.ontario.ca/page/list-essential-workplaces
If you have questions about what will be open or impacts to your business or employment, read the frequently asked questions or call the Stop the Spread Business Information Line at 1-888-444-3659.
Ontario Unveils Guiding Principles to Reopen the Province - April 27, 2020
Today, the Ontario government released A Framework for Reopening our Province, which outlines the criteria Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health and health experts will use to advise the government on the loosening of emergency measures, as well as guiding principles for the safe, gradual reopening of businesses, services and public spaces. The framework also provides details of an outreach strategy, led by the Ontario Jobs and Recovery Committee, to help inform the restart of the provincial economy.
The government is planning a stage-by-stage approach to reopening the economy to ensure there are appropriate measures in place so workplaces can open safely. Public health officials will carefully monitor each stage for two to four weeks, as they assess the evolution of the COVID-19 outbreak to determine if it is necessary to change course to maintain public health:
- Stage 1: For businesses that were ordered to close or restrict operations, opening select workplaces that can immediately modify operations to meet public health guidance. Opening some outdoor spaces like parks and allowing for a greater number of individuals to attend some events. Hospitals would also begin to offer some non-urgent and scheduled surgeries, and other health care services.
- Stage 2: Opening more workplaces, based on risk assessments, which may include some service industries and additional office and retail workplaces. Some larger public gatherings would be allowed, and more outdoor spaces would open.
- Stage 3: Opening of all workplaces responsibly and further relaxing of restrictions on public gatherings.
To read the full media release, visit: https://www.news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/04/ontario-unveils-guiding-principles-to-reopen-the-province.html
Ontario Extends Emergency Orders to Help Stop the Spread of COVID-19 - April 23, 2020
On the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ontario government is extending all emergency orders that have been put in place to-date under s.7.0.2 (4) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act until May 6, 2020. This extension will help protect the health and well-being of people across the province and stop the spread of COVID-19.
This Emergency Order extension includes the closure of outdoor amenities in parks and recreational areas, non-essential workplaces, public places and bars and restaurants, along with restrictions on social gatherings and limiting staff from working in more than one retirement home or long-term care home.
Full details on all orders extended:
Ontario Extends Declaration of Emergency to Continue the Fight Against COVID-19 - April 14, 2020
On the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health and with the approval of the Ontario legislature, the Ontario government is extending the Declaration of Emergency under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act for a further 28 days. This will allow the government to continue to use every tool at its disposal to protect the health and safety of the people of Ontario during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Passed during a special sitting of the Ontario legislature and with the full cooperation of all parties, the Declaration of Emergency has been extended until May 12. The extension of the provincial declaration of emergency allows Ontario to continue to enforce current emergency orders, such as the closure of all non-essential workplaces, outdoor amenities such as parks and recreational areas, public places and bars and restaurants, as well as restrictions on social gatherings of more than five people, and prohibitions against price-gouging. A full list of emergency orders can be found on the e-Laws website under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act.
To read the full release visit: https://www.news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/04/ontario-extends-declaration-of-emergency-to-continue-the-fight-against-covid-19.html
Ontario Together: help fight Coronavirus
The Ontario Government has $50 million to support submissions that can be actioned quickly. The Ontario Together Fund will help companies retool, build capacity or adopt the technological changes needed to produce supplies and equipment for hospitals, long-term care homes and other critical public services.
Ontario Joins Forces with the Private Sector to Fight COVID-19
New $50 million Ontario Together Fund will support the development of essential equipment and supplies
To stop the spread of COVID-19 and keep people safe, the Ontario government is launching a new $50 million Ontario Together Fund to help businesses provide innovative solutions or retool their operations in order to manufacture essential medical supplies and equipment, including gowns, coveralls, masks, face shields, testing equipment and ventilators. This new Fund will support the development of proposals submitted by businesses and individuals through the Ontario Together web portal.
Ontario Helping Indigenous Communities Stop the Spread of COVID-19
Public Required to Identify Themselves if Charged with Breaching an Emergency Order During the COVID-19 Outbreak
People who are being charged with an offence under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) will be required to identify themselves if asked by a provincial offences officer, which includes police officers, First Nations constables, special constables and municipal by-law enforcement officers. This temporary power was approved by the Ontario government today through an emergency order to better protect people during this COVID-19 outbreak.
"It is essential that measures are in place to allow provincial offences officers to lawfully require an individual to disclose their correct name, date of birth and address in order to protect our communities," said Sylvia Jones, Solicitor General. "By providing provincial offences officers with this temporary power to obtain identifying information under the EMCPA, they will be able to enforce emergency orders during these extraordinary times."
Emergency orders currently in place to address the COVID-19 outbreak include the closure of non-essential businesses, prohibiting organized public events and social gatherings of more than five people and stopping price gouging on necessary goods such as disinfectant products. Failing to comply with any of these emergency orders is an offence under the EMCPA and so is the failure to identify oneself accurately.
Failing to correctly identify oneself carries a fine of $750 for failure to comply with an order made under the EMCPA or $1,000 for obstructing any person in exercising a power if a provincial offences officer issues a ticket. In addition, failure to comply with an emergency order could carry punishments of up to one-year imprisonment or a fine of up to $100,000 for an individual, $500,000 for a director of a corporation, or $10,000,000 for a corporation itself if a provincial offences officer charges the individual by issuing a summons.
For full details on the Provincial media release, visit:
Ontario Extends School and Child Care Closures to Fight Spread of COVID-19 - March 31, 2020
Due to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 outbreak, the Ontario government announced that schools and child care centres will remain closed to protect the health and safety of students and staff. This extension is being made on the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health.
Today's announcement was made by Premier Doug Ford, Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education, Ross Romano, Minister of Colleges and Universities and Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health.
To ensure continuity of learning, the government is launching the second phase of Learn at Home. Developed in conjunction with education partners, the government is establishing clarity for parents, enhancing education supports, and creating opportunities for teachers and educators to connect with students.
For more details visit:
Ontario Extends School and Child Care Closures
Learn at Home
Ontario Extends Emergency Declaration to Stop the Spread of COVID-19 - March 30, 2020
In an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19 and keep people home, the Government of Ontario has extended the Declaration of Emergency and associated emergency measures, including the closure of non-essential workplaces and restrictions on social gatherings. In addition, Ontario is issuing a new emergency order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act to close all outdoor recreational amenities, such as sports fields and playgrounds, effective immediately. These actions are based on the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health.
This new order would close all communal or shared, public or private, outdoor recreational amenities everywhere in Ontario, including but not limited to playgrounds, sports fields, basketball and tennis courts, off-leash dog parks, benches, skateboard and BMX parks, picnic areas, outdoor community gardens, park shelters, outdoor exercise equipment, condo parks and gardens, and other outdoor recreational amenities. Green spaces in parks, trails, ravines and conservation areas that aren't otherwise closed would remain open for walkthrough access, but individuals must maintain the safe physical distance of at least two metres apart from others. Ontario's provincial parks and conservation reserves remain closed.
For the full media release visit: https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/03/ontario-extends-emergency-declaration-to-stop-the-spread-of-covid-19.html
Full order from Province
Province prohibits gatherings of more than 5 people - March 28, 2020
The Province has announced that gatherings of more than five people are prohibited in Ontario. This includes organized public events such as parades, events including weddings, social gatherings and communal services within places of worship.
This order would not apply to private households with five people or more. It would also not apply to
operating child care centres supporting frontline health care workers and first responders provided the number of persons at each centre does not exceed 50 people. Funerals would be permitted to proceed with up to 10 people at one time.
For more details please visit:
Ontario Protecting Consumers from Price Gouging - March 28, 2020
Ontario has announced new penalties to combat price gouging and hold offenders accountable for raising prices significantly on the necessary goods Ontarians need to protect themselves and their families from COVID-19.
Effective immediately, the government has issued an emergency order that retail businesses and individuals in Ontario cannot charge unfair prices for necessary goods.
Individual offenders can face a ticket of $750, or, if summoned to court and convicted, could face a maximum penalty of a $100,000 fine and one year in jail. If convicted, a company director or officer could face a fine of up to $500,000 and up to a year in jail, and a corporation could face a fine of up to $10 million.
Necessary goods include:
- Masks and gloves used as personal protective equipment in relation to infections.
- Non-prescription medications for the treatment of the symptoms of the coronavirus.
- Disinfecting agents intended for cleaning and disinfecting objects or humans.
- Personal hygiene products, including soap products and paper products.
For more details please visit: