Reducing customers, lowering music among measures Toronto may take to stop COVID-19 spread

Sep 29 2020, 1:10 pm

Toronto may be taking further action to reduce the spread of COVID-19, like limiting customers in food and drink establishments, and turning down music.

On Monday, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health Dr. Eileen de Villa said in a report going before City Council this week, that there is a need for more actions to mitigate the impact of the resurgence of COVID-19 cases.

Toronto Public Health has identified that case clusters and outbreaks have occurred among staff and patrons in “a diverse range of workplaces.”

Therefore the recommendations include: reducing the total number of patrons permitted to be inside a food and drink establishment at any one time from 100 to 75; requiring establishments to maintain a customer log for each patron, not just one person from the party; reducing the maximum number of people able to sit at each table, both inside and outside, from 10 to six; requiring that background music and any other background sounds, to be no louder than the volume of normal conversation.

“I’m very concerned with the increase in COVID-19 activity we’re seeing in our city. Today I’m recommending further actions to quickly reduce virus transmission. We still have time to reverse this trend,” said de Villa.

“We all have a role to reduce virus spread in our city, so please adopt steps for self-protection: as much as possible limit contact with anyone you don’t live with; as often as possible, keep at least six feet apart from people you don’t live with; as often as possible, wear a mask when outside your home, especially in indoor settings and when physical distancing is difficult; wash your hands frequently; and remain at home when ill. Your actions will help keep you and our community safer as we continue living with this virus.”

This report also recommends extending the existing City of Toronto COVID-19 bylaws until the end of City Council’s first meeting in 2021.

This includes physical distancing in public spaces, mandatory face masks bylaws, public health measures for bars and restaurants, and mandating face masks in apartment buildings — these are currently in effect until October 1.

“We all understand the paramount importance of maintaining public health as a healthy economic recovery requires healthy people. To that end, Dr. de Villa has recommended a number of measures that City Council can approve this week to protect the health of our city. I fully support these measures. We are taking action now to address this.” Tory said on Monday.

The City Council meeting will take place on September 29 and October 1.

Clarrie FeinsteinClarrie Feinstein

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