Ford officially orders non-essential businesses to shut down in Ontario

Mar 23 2020, 10:34 am

The Province of Ontario announced that all non-essential businesses will be closing in Ontario, effective Tuesday, March 24 at 11:59 pm.

It will be mandated for 14 days and the province will release a list of businesses allowed to stay open on Tuesday.

“We will and we must take steps necessary to slow the spread of COVID-19,” Ford said. “This is a very tough decision, but it is the right decision. This decision wasn’t made lightly”

Ford said as the pandemic changes, so must the government’s response, which is why more drastic measures are being taken.

The premier also noted that more details on the order will be available on Wednesday, March 25, such as whether compensation will be given for the businesses that will be forced to close.

The fiscal budget will also be released the same day.

An 800 number and website will be made available on Wednesday for any inquiries.

It was also mentioned during the press conference that “policing partners will be part of the enforcement if, and when, it is necessary.”

“We will not lose this battle and we will get ahead of this, we must get ahead of this,” said Ford.

Ontario’s premier stressed the importance of “social distancing” and warned anyone who has travelled to self-isolate for 14 days.

“Do not, I repeat, do not, go straight from the airport to the grocery store. Go directly home. I can not repeat that enough,” he said.

The Province of Ontario has confirmed 78 new cases of coronavirus, bringing the total up to 503 cases, as of Monday morning.

This marks the largest single-day jump since the virus began to spread in Ontario.

Eight have been resolved, and six are now deceased. There are also 8,417 cases currently under investigation.