Ontario going into a month-long 'shutdown' Saturday

Ontario to go into month-long COVID-19 shut-down starting April 3

Ontario to go into month-long COVID-19 shut-down starting April 3

The government is asking Ontarians to limit trips outside the home to necessities such as food, medication and other essential services. Take out and delivery dining will still be permitted.

"Friends, we are facing a very very serious situation".

Ford is scheduled to hold a news conference at 1:30 p.m. ET. The processes we now have in place to protect staff and members of the public are in compliance with the new measures announced by the Province, and will ensure ongoing business continuity as we continue to deliver the essential municipal services on which our community relies.

The new measures will prohibit indoor gatherings with people outside your household and outdoor gatherings will be limited to five people.

Outdoor dining, including on patios, is also banned across the province.

Capacity at weddings, funerals, and religious services, rites, or ceremonies is limited to 15 percent occupancy per room indoors, and to the number of individuals that can maintain two metres of physical distance outdoors. As of March 28, most health unit zones in Ontario were above the Red- Control level. "The variants of concern are spreading rapidly", Ford said. "Today, I need to make on of those tough decisions". "One thousand percent, it's the right decision", said Ford.

The revised modelling comes as the province faces a worsening third wave of the pandemic, driven by the spread of variants of concern, particularly B117, the variant first identified in the United Kingdom.

Premier Doug Ford said he is pulling the emergency brake, just as restrictions across the province were easing.

"We saw that last time that it had tremendous ill-effect on both children and adults".

Ford said that as the COVID-19 vaccination continues to be distributed, that the end of the pandemic was in sight, but that pressure on the healthcare system needed to be relieved before that end was reached.

"I think we need to make those true ICU numbers, the true number of people who are in the ICU and standing with complications of COVID-19, as visible as possible".

Ontario's daily COVID-19 case count surged back up over the 3,000 mark on Saturday, hours after a new provincewide "shutdown" took effect in a move to bring soaring infection rates back under control.

Statement from Warden Bob Crate on provincial shutdown — RELEASE
Big box stores are limited to 25 per cent capacity and while businesses like grocery stores are limited to 50 per cent capacity. Capacity at weddings, funerals, and other religious services will be limited to 15 per cent capacity indoors.

"The current measures and framework are not working to contain the spread of this virus", reads the letter in part.

"We have a ton of people now who are sick, most of those because of the COVID-19 variants in particular".

The province said 147,749 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine were administered since Thursday's report.

Ontario has also reported more than 2,000 new infections for the past seven consecutive days. "That is our best protection against this deadly virus", added the Premier. "The new variants are far more unsafe than before", Ford said.

Outdoor fitness classes also briefly resumed in regions under the grey zone.

Rather than introducing that measure, the province has encouraged people to get tested for COVID-19 so they can apply for federal benefits if the virus forces them to stay home.

"We are in the third wave of the pandemic".

Schools will remain open for in-person learning, although some Ontario students have been learning virtually since September. "We will get through this if we all work together".

Most of the new cases reported on Saturday are concentrated in hot spot regions in the Greater Toronto Area.

Locally, COVID-19 indicators in the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health (WDGPH) region have been increasing for several weeks.

The seven-day average is up to 2,341 cases daily and 113 weekly per 100,000.

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