Toronto and Peel both announced Tuesday that they will close workplaces where five or more COVID-19 cases have been discovered in a two-week period.
The move comes as public health experts call on the province to make essential workplaces safer as they are common sites for COVID-19 outbreaks.
“We are doing everything we can as a city government to help essential workers facing the third wave of this virus,” Mayor John Tory said in a news release. “This Section 22 order is meant to help slam the brakes on workplace outbreaks that we know are moving much faster due to the variants of concern.”
The new order was issued by the two regions’ public health authorities.
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Workplaces with COVID-19 clusters will be closed for a period of 10 days to allow other workers to self-isolate.
Although Ontario currently has no legislated paid sick days, Peel Public Health strongly recommended businesses provide paid leave for employees who need to stay home.
Some workplaces are exempt from the new order including healthcare facilities, schools, daycares, and other workplaces providing “critical” services.