KFL&A Public Health cracks down on St. Patrick’s Day celebrations

Gatherings over 5 people prohibited both indoors and outdoors, $5,000 fines authorized

Kieran Moore, medical officer of health at KFL&A Public Health, issued the section 22 class order on March 4.

Thanks to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, students can expect a significantly quieter St. Patrick’s Day this year.

Kingston, Frontenac, and Lennox and Addington (KFL&A) Public Health detailed their plans on Thursday for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. It issued a Class Order, under which no person may host or attend a social gathering on St. Patrick’s Day with more than 5 people—indoors or outdoors.

The order is in accordance with Section 22 of the Ontario Health Protection and Promotion Act, 1990, and will be effective from 12:01 a.m. on March 13 to 11:59 p.m. on March 21.

“Given the increasing concerns of COVID-19 variants, and the risks of potential spread of COVID-19 related to St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, these measures are prudent and necessary to prevent illness and the spread of COVID-19,” Kieran Moore, medical officer of health at KFL&A Public Health, said in a press release. 

Individuals who fail to comply with the order may be fined up to $5,000.  

The order also mandates all businesses that serve alcohol be closed between 11 a.m. to 5 a.m., to only sell alcohol between 12:00 p.m. and 10 p.m., and not allow the consumption of alcohol between 11:00 p.m. and 12:00 p.m.

Businesses must also require all patrons to be seated when served; sit only five people to a table; collect contact information from those seated; not allow dancing, singing, or live music; and ensure line management follows physical distancing guidelines, mask mandates, and capacity limits.

Corporations failing to comply with the order may be fined up to $25,000.

According to the press release, the order was issued to protect the community, keep schools and the economy open, and prevent an impact on emergency medical services and hospital resources.

“I want to thank the community for their continued vigilance and support in keeping our community safe and want to emphasize the importance of continuing to adhere to public health measures,” Moore said.

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