Stay-at-home order & state of emergency extended additional two weeks

Province to close outdoor recreational facilities, limit travel, and increase enforcement measures

Ford said Ontario is “pressing” the federal government to get more vaccines.

Ontario’s stay-at-home order and state of emergency have been extended for an additional two weeks effective immediately, Premier Doug Ford announced in a press conference on Friday.

Beginning Saturday, outdoor gatherings will be limited to members of one’s own household only. Retail capacities in big box stores are reduced to 25 per cent.

Outdoor recreational facilities, including golf courses, basketball courts, playgrounds, and soccer fields will be closed.

Places of worship will only be permitted to allow 10 people indoors, effective Monday.  

In addition to greater restrictions on service capacities, Ford also announced the government is setting up checkpoints at the Ontario borders with Manitoba and Quebec to limit travel in between the provinces, with exceptions made for individuals travelling to work, accessing medical care, and transporting goods.

“We are calling on our federal government to immediately tighten up our international borders,” Ford said.

“We’re currently facing the devastating consequences of the COVID-19 variants that entered Canada through our borders at the start of this year. We need to do more to stop other, even deadlier variants, from getting into Canada and causing more havoc. That means limiting air travel, tightening our US border, and addressing the countless issues we’re seeing with testing and quarantine when people fly into our country.”

Ford said Ontario is taking “decisive action” on the ground to increase enforcement measures and noted the provincial government has made the decision to give police and bylaw officers special authorities to enforce public health measures for the duration for the stay-at-home order.

Beginning at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, officers will be able to stop anyone on the street or in a vehicle and ask why they are not in their home. Those who do not comply with questioning may be issued a ticket.

“I know most of Ontarians are following the rules and keeping each other safe, but we need to step up enforcement,” Ford said. “We need to focus on those who are deliberately putting others at risk by ignoring the stay-at-home order.”

“Understand the restrictions will be strongly, strongly enforced,” he said. “We know that these measures work.”

Following the news of a delay in the shipment of Moderna vaccines to Canada, Ford also noted that the limited vaccines Ontario currently has will be prioritized to hotspot regions in the province.

Ford said Ontario is “pressing” the federal government to get more vaccines.

“More vaccines mean fewer cases, more vaccines mean fewer hospitalizations, and more vaccines mean we get out of this sooner. If there is anything the federal government can do to get more vaccines, we need them now,” Ford said.

“My friends, you have my word that we will not rest until this virus is beaten.”


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