Toronto, Peel back to Covid-19 lockdown tier
Shady Salah – Media in Toronto
The Doug Ford government has decided to place Toronto and Peel under the “lockdown” category in its tiered framework for COVID-19 restrictions.
The new measures contain the closure of gyms, recreation facilities and personal care services while also limiting all non-essential retail stores to curbside pickup only. Schools, child care, grocery stores, pharmacies, doctors, dentists and other essential services will remain open with capacity limits in lockdown areas. Staring on Monday at 12:01 a.m., in person shopping will be prohibited in Toronto and Peel with exceptions for essential retailers such as supermarkets, hardware stores, department stores, pharmacies and beer and liquor stores. Bars and restaurants will continue to permitted to provide takeout or delivery services but will no longer be allowed to serve customers on their premises, even if it is on a patio. Peel is by far the hardest hit region in the province, currently seeing 195 new cases weekly per 100,000 population — nearly five times higher than the province’s threshold of 40 for red-zone restrictions. The Ford government is also prohibiting all organized gatherings and social events indoors “except with members of the same household.”The gathering limit for outdoor events will be reduced to 10 for regions under a lockdown.
“As public health indicators continue to worsen in regions across the province, particularly in hotspots like Peel and Toronto, it is clear that more needs to be done to limit community spread of COVID-19” said Minister Elliott. “As we have seen around the world, lockdowns are a difficult but necessary step to stop the spread, safeguard the key services we rely on and protect our health system capacity. With the recent positive news on the development of a vaccine, there is a real hope that we can defeat this deadly virus, but for now we all must continue to follow public health advice and strictly adhere to the restrictions in place”