On Feb 9, the Province of Ontario changed its rules for lockdown. What does that mean for business and how are individuals affected?
The Provincial emergency order will expire Feb 10 at 12:01am Many of the regulations imposed by the order will remain in effect. In essence, rather than the provincial government controlling the entire province as one area, each health unit will be handled individually. It allows for the most appropriate response based on number of cases in an area rather than applying one set of rules to the entire province. The province is returning to the control zone by
Colour Control Zones
As we saw in 2020, the colour code system will be in place to set control measures that are appropriate to the case concentration. Beginning Feb. 10th, Hastings and Prince Edward County, Kingston Frontenac Lennox and Addington, Renfrew County health units will be returning to the colour control zones. Everywhere else in the province EXCEPT Peel, Toronto and York regions will be returning on Feb. 16th. Peel, Toronto and York will return on Feb. 22nd.
Stay at Home control: (most of the province) stay at home unless you’re going to school, work, the grocery store, the pharmacy, helping vulnerable people, and exercising. Don’t visit people. If you live alone, you may visit one other household only. Businesses must screen all workers, limit occupancy to 50% of capacity and ensure that everyone stays 2m apart. Surfaces must be cleaned and disinfected regularly. Everyone in the business must wear a face covering or mask of some kind. A safety plan must be posted where employees and patrons can see it. A safety plan must include protective measures, controls and a method of notifying the company in the event of an exposure. Most retail businesses are restricted to curbside pick up . Businesses that require in person shopping such as automobiles, prescription eyewear, medical devices and safety supply stores require an appointment.
Grey/Lockdown control: don’t visit anyone you don’t live with. Indoor social gatherings are prohibited. Outdoor social gatherings are limited to 10 people. Most of the same restrictions are in place as the Stay At Home control. Retailers can open at a maximum of 25% capacity , 50% for pharmacies and grocery stores. Everyone must continue to wear a face covering and remain 2m apart.
Red control: restaurants are allowed to have seating for up to 10 people with a maximum of 4 people per table, minimum 2m between tables. Alcohol service stops at 9pm music dancing and live performances are still prohibited. In the red control zone, Meeting spaces can be opened with a maximum of 10 people indoors, 25 outdoors, no more than 4 people per table. Face coverings are required at all times. Gyms and sports can operate in the red control zone.
Orange control: indoor gatherings (homes) limited to 10 people, organized events limited to 50 indoors. Restaurants are now allowed to seat 50 guests, the same rules as red control apply. Meeting and event spaces are limited to 50 indoors. Retailers are now allowed to be at full capacity.
Yellow control: Restaurants are now allowed to operate at full capacity with 2m between each table. Closing time is extended to midnight. Retail is generally not restricted, except that dressing rooms cannot be adjacent and everyone must be wearing a face covering or mask.
Green control: this is the least restrictive of the control measures. Sports and recreation can have up to 50 participants per class and up to 50 spectators indoors, and 100 of each outdoors.
The control measures put in place are based on the number of active cases and rate of positive testing. The rules are changing regularly as the provincial health authorities learn more about the spread and control of COVID-19 virus.
Regular updates can be found here:
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