Ontario extends orders to address COVID-19 for another month

Nov 20 2020, 6:22 am

The Ontario government is extending orders to combat the COVID-19 pandemic for another month.

On Friday, the province will be extending all orders currently in force under the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020 (ROA) until December 21.

“As the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic grips our province, we all need to do our part to protect ourselves and our loved ones and keep our communities safe,” said Solicitor General Sylvia Jones, in a statement.

“Extending these orders will continue to ensure we have the tools to address urgent public health situations and support the delivery of health care and other critical services, while keeping measures in place to protect vulnerable populations.”

The extension of orders under the ROA is part of Ontario’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. On November 13, the government updated its Keeping Ontario Safe and Open Framework to lower the thresholds for each level in the framework. The framework provides five levels of public health measures that could be applied to public health unit regions: Green-Prevent, Yellow-Protect, Orange-Restrict, Red-Control, and Lockdown being a measure of last and urgent resort.

On Monday, Hamilton, Halton, Peel, and York moved into the red “control zone.”

Toronto already moved into the red zone on November 14 but has additional restrictions imposed by the city’s top doctor, Eileen de Villa. They include closing indoor dining, fitness classes, cinemas and reducing gatherings to just immediate households with one or two essential supports.

Peel Region moved into the red zone on November 7 and added further restrictions to limit the virus’s spread.

However, due to the high infection rates in Toronto, Peel, and York Region, Premier Doug Ford said new measures would be announced on Friday.

The ROA came into effect on July 24 after the provincial declared emergency ended. The ROA ensures important measures to combat coronavirus remain in place, and can extend orders for up to 30 days at a time.

The list of orders that have been extended are available online.

Clarrie FeinsteinClarrie Feinstein

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