Ontario Premier Doug Ford will be making an announcement on Wednesday on the launch of an independent commission into COVID-19 and long-term care.
He will be joined at Queen’s Park at 1 pm by Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Long-Term Care, according to a release.
The news comes after it was announced on Wednesday morning that Toronto and Peel region would be entering Stage 3
According to the Government of Ontario, additional businesses and public spaces will be reopening as the province allows the City of Toronto and Peel Region to move into Stage 3 of reopening the province on Friday, July 31 at 12:01 am.
In Stage 3, dine-in restaurants, bars, gyms, fitness centres, live shows, performing arts centres, casinos, concert venues, recreational facilities, team sports, fundraisers, fairs, festivals or open houses, and tour and guide services can reopen.
Groups of 50 are also allowed to congregate indoors and 100 can meet outdoors.
This decision for Toronto was made in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health and local medical officers of health and is based on positive local trends of key public health indicators, including lower transmission of the coronavirus, ongoing hospital capacity, public health capacity to conduct rapid case and contact management, and a significant increase in testing.
“While more restaurants, theatres and businesses can hang up their Open for Business sign, we’re asking everyone to follow public health advice and act responsibly,” said Premier Doug Ford in a release.
“We have made tremendous progress that allows us to return to something a little closer to our normal lives this summer, but we are not out of the woods yet. This virus is still among us and we have to be extra cautious to avoid sparking a surge or an outbreak. I strongly urge everyone to continue following public health protocols.”
For regions in Stage 3, gathering limits will increase to a maximum of 50 people indoors and a maximum of 100 people outdoors, with physical distancing in place.
Last week, Durham, Halton, Hamilton, Niagara, Haldimand-Norfolk, Sarnia-Lambton, and York regions joined the 24 other regions that entered the third and final stage on July 17.
Windsor-Essex County Health Unit region will remain in Stage 2. The province said it will continue to monitor local trends of key public health indicators in the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit region and move it into Stage 3 when it is safe to do so.