Multicultural friends at home isolation celebrating online streaming live on video call while holding candles and having fun in quarantine keeping social distance

This Version Posted: February 19, 2021

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Key Message: Stay Safe, Stay Home, Limit Gatherings

Staying home is still the best way to protect yourself and others. COVID-19 remains a health risk, and coronavirus variants now circulating locally and in Ontario can more easily be spread between people.

Protect yourself and your loved ones by:

  • Avoiding social gatherings. (This is strongly recommended, even though social gatherings at private homes, backyards or parks of up to 10 people indoors and up to 25 people outdoors are now allowed — provided people wear masks and keep 2 metres apart from others).
  • Limit close contacts to only those people with whom you live.
  • Celebrate virtually or connect by phone with other family and friends. This is a better and safer way to mark holidays and celebrations. A return to normal will come once more COVID-19 vaccines are available, helping to better control the spread of the virus.
  • Avoid all non-essential travel, especially to areas with high COVID-19 rates.

General Tips for Holidays, Celebrations and Family Gatherings
  • Stay home if sick. Use Ontario’s online COVID-19 assessment tool to help determine if you need further care.
  • Avoid non-essential trips to any other part of Ontario.
  • Limit your contact to only those in your immediate household. If you live alone, you can celebrate with one other household.
  • Follow food safety tips if preparing a meal for your immediate household.
  • Do NOT visit visit loved ones whom you do not live. Instead, connect virtually with family and friends. Pick up the phone or chat via social media and/or video-conferencing. Consider using these platforms to hold a virtual holiday party/celebration. If technology is not your thing, send a card or write a letter to a loved one.
  • Look after your mental health and that of your loved ones, especially people who may be alone and feel cut off from others.
  • Avoid the “3 C’s” – closed spaces, crowded places and close faces. 
  • Practise physical distancing as much as possible. Keep a 2 metre (6-foot) distance from anyone who is outside your household.
  • Wear a mask or face covering inside public places. Ensure face coverings are tightly fitted to cover the nose, mouth and chin (scarves and bandanas are insufficient). NEW: Wearing a mask or face covering is now recommended outdoors when you can’t physically distance more than two metres from others outside your household.