As the second lockdown looms over Toronto and Premier Doug Ford’s plea to avoid “panic buying” falls short, some grocery stores over the weekend saw long line ups as residents prepare for the next 28 days.
On Friday, Ford announced that Toronto would enter another lockdown at 12:01 am on Monday, November 23, for almost a month.
“With the numbers rising rapidly in certain regions, we have to make the tough, but necessary decisions now to protect our hospitals, long-term care, and retirement homes, and every person in this province,” said Ford on Friday.
“We cannot afford a province-wide lockdown, so we are taking preventative action today by moving Toronto and Peel into lockdown level restrictions and other regions into higher levels of restrictions. We need to take decisive action to stop the spread of this deadly virus.”
With lockdown measures in place as of Monday, many people were seen lining up at grocery stores to stock up on necessities to avoid shopping during the lockdown over the weekend.
Reminiscent of Stage 1 lockdowns in March, some line ups were spotted long enough to wrap around buildings.
— Peter .P. Phillips. 🎙Podcast & Radio 📻 (@PlatinumPhilips) November 22, 2020
According to the guidelines, retail stores are permitted to be open for curbside pick-up or delivery only. As for supermarkets, grocery stores, pharmacies, hardware stores, discount and big-box retailers that sell groceries, beer, wine and liquor stores, safety supply stores, and convenience stores – they will be allowed to operate at 50% capacity.
Toronto lockdown liquor store line up. pic.twitter.com/WROE09vHHr
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Toronto’s top doctor, Dr. Eileen de Villa believes the province’s decision to put the city in another lockdown is a “necessary decision.”
On Friday, de Villa said there is “no doubt that today’s decision is the necessary decision” as it’s “demanded by the high level of the COVID-19 threat and great risk we will lose control of virtual spread.”
Both Toronto and Peel Region, currently in the Red-Control level of the province’s framework, have seen rising cases in recent weeks.
The provincial government confirmed 1,588 new COVID-19 cases on Saturday morning, the highest daily count since the pandemic began, surpassing last Saturday’s 1,581.