The Government of Ontario is placing several new regions into lockdown next week due to the continued rise in cases of COVID-19, bringing the total across the province to four.
Beginning at 12:01 am on December 14, York Region Public Health and Windsor-Essex County Health Unit will move into the Grey – Lockdown region of Ontario’s COVID-19 framework. They will remain in the grey zone for at least 28 days.
The regions join the City of Toronto and Peel Region, which have both been in lockdown since November 23.
Yesterday, Windsor-Essex announced that it would be closing all elementary and secondary schools in the county for one week beginning on the 14th, which will bring students into the holiday school break.
“Over the last week, public health indicators in the York and Windsor regions have continued to trend in the wrong direction and it is evident additional measures are needed to help limit the spread of the virus,” said Dr. David Williams, Ontario’s’ Chief Medical Officer of Health.
Restrictions in the Grey – lockdown zone include banning all indoor gatherings with members outside of your immediate household and limiting outdoor gatherings to a maximum of 10 people.
Indoor and outdoor dining is prohibited. Restaurants, bars, and food and drink establishments are only allowed to be open for takeout, drive-through, and delivery.
In-person shopping is banned, and retail stores can only offer curbside pick-up or delivery.
“Moving a region into Grey-Lockdown is not an easy decision, but it is one we needed to make in order to help stop the spread of the virus and safeguard the key services we rely on,” said Christine Elliott, Ontario’s Minister of Health.
On Friday morning, the province reported 1,848 new COVID-19 cases and 45 deaths — the highest death count since June 4.
Of the new cases, 469 are in Toronto, 386 are in Peel, 205 are in York Region, and 106 are in Windsor-Essex County.