This Version Posted: April 16, 2021

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Latest Update:

  • The Provincial State of Emergency and Stay-at-Home Order put in place on April 8 are now being extended an extra two weeks (to at least May 20). This is part of new enhanced measures announced by the Province on April 16 to stop the spread of COVID-19. All of Ontario, including Haliburton County, Northumberland County and the City of Kawartha Lakes, is covered by these measures.
  • As part of the Stay-at-Home Order, you must stay home as much as possible, except to go out for essential purposes. This includes: going to the grocery store/pharmacy, accessing health care services (including getting vaccinated for COVID-19), outdoor exercise, or for work that cannot be done remotely. Under the updated restrictions, police and other provincial offences officers will have new temporary powers to enforce the Stay-at-Home Order. This includes: being able to ask people where they live and why they aren’t at their home, and having the discretion to issue $750 tickets if the person declines to respond to questions or provide a valid reason.
  • Additional measures announced on April 16 by the Province include:
    • Closure of all outdoor amenities like golf courses, playgrounds, basketball courts, soccer fields and tennis courts (with limited exceptions).
    • Reducing capacity limits to 25% in all retail settings where in-store shopping is permitted. This includes supermarkets, grocery stores, convenience stores, and pharmacies (which before could operate at 50% capacity)
    • Banning all outdoor social gatherings and organized public events except with members of the same household. (NOTE: people who live alone can have exclusive contact with one other family).
    • Shutting down all non-essential workplaces in the construction sector.
    • As of Monday (April 19), limiting indoor and outdoor gatherings for religious services, weddings and funerals to no more than 10 people. Social gatherings associated with these services are prohibited, except for members of the same household. Drive-in services will still be allowed.
    • Banning interprovincial travel except for essential reasons (as of Monday, April 19, checkpoints are to be set up at Ontario border crossings into Manitoba and Quebec)
    • Allowing non-essential retailers to continue offering curbside pickup and delivery
  • Please read on below for additional information, including what and how businesses are impacted by these measures.

Key Measures in Shutdown

Below are highlights of the control measures. For full details, including on the Stay-at-Home Order and which businesses can open and operate (or remain closed), visit the Province’s information page:

Stay-at-Home Order

Essential reasons to leave home include:

  • Going to get groceries and other essentials
  • Getting medications and other supplies at the pharmacy
  • Accessing health care services (including medical appointments and getting your COVID-19 vaccination)
  • Going outside for exercise (but not to use parks and other outdoor amenities which are now closed)
  • Going to work (if you cannot do it remotely)
  • Going to daycare
  • Helping others, including providing care, support and assistance to those who need it
  • Protecting yourself (for example, escaping domestic violence)
  • Caring for animals (e.g. walking your dog, accessing veterinarian services, buying pet food/supplies).
  • Attending a wedding, funeral, or religious service.

Increased Powers to Enforce Stay-at-Home Order

  • Under the updated restrictions, police will have temporary, but increased powers to enforce the Stay-at-Home Order.
  • This includes: being able to ask people where they live and why they aren’t at their home, and having the discretion to issue $750 tickets if the person declines to respond to questions or provide a valid reason.
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Religious Services, Weddings and Funerals

NEW: As of 12:01 am on April 19, reduced limits are in place for religious services, weddings and funerals.

  • No more than 10 people are allowed to gather indoors or outdoors for weddings, funerals and religious services. Physical distancing must be maintained, and attendees must wear masks or face coverings.
  • Social gatherings associated with these services (such as receptions) are not allowed, except for members of the same household.
  • Virtual services are permitted — and may be the best option at this time.
  • Drive-in services, are permitted.
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Gatherings and Other Considerations
  • Indoor and outdoor gatherings are NOT allowed, except with members of the same household (the people you live with).
  • NOTE: Anyone who lives alone will still be able to spend time (have close contact) with one other household to reduce the impacts of isolation.
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Schools and Daycares
  • Due to rapidly rising COVID-19 cases, all elementary and secondary schools in Ontario will shift to teacher-led, remote learning on April 19. No date for a return to in-person learning has been set.
  • Child care for non-school aged children will remain open, but before and after school programs will be closed. Free emergency child care for the school-aged children of eligible health care and frontline workers will be provided. 
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How and What Businesses Are Affected – Overview
  • Click here for a full list of businesses that can open and the restrictions now in place.
  • NEW: Capacity limits at all retail settings where in-person shopping is permitted is limited to 25% capacity. Grocery stores, pharmacies, convenience stores, indoor farmers’ markets, and other stores that primarily sell food must now operate at this 25% capacity (down from 50% capacity). Curbside pick-up and delivery can also be offered.
  • All non-essential retailers must close to in-person shopping. They are only allowed to operate with curbside pickup and delivery (by appointment) between 7 am and 8 pm.
  • Discount and big-box stores can remain open, but only to sell essential goods such as: grocery items, pet care supplies, household cleaning supplies, pharmacy items, health care items, and personal care items only. Capacity for in-person shopping is limited to 25% capacity. Curbside pick-up and delivery can also be offered.
  • Restaurants can only be open for takeout, delivery and drive through. Indoor and outdoor dining are not allowed.
  • Shopping malls must close for in-person shopping, and are limited to curbside pickup via appointment and delivery.
  • Gyms, fitness clubs, concert venues/theatres/cinemas (includes drive-in or drive-through events), barbershops, spas, hair salons and other select businesses remain closed. Click here for a full list of businesses that must stay closed.
  • A select group of stores are allowed to remain open by appointment only with a 25 per cent capacity limit (hours are restricted from 7 am to 8 pm). These include:
    • Safety supply stores
    • Businesses that primarily sell, rent or repair assistive devices, aids or supplies, mobility devices, aids or supplies or medical devices, aids or supplies
    • Rental and leasing services including automobile, commercial and light industrial machinery and equipment rental
    • Optical stores that sell prescription eyewear to the public
    • Businesses that sell motor vehicles, boats and other watercraft
    • Vehicle and equipment repair and essential maintenance and vehicle and equipment rental services
    • Retail stores operated by a telecommunications provider or service, which may only permit members of the public to enter the premises to purchase a cellphone or for repairs or technical support.
  • Outdoor garden centres and plant nurseries, as well as indoor greenhouses can remain open, but must operate at a 25% capacity limit and restrict their hours from 7 am to 8 pm.
  • NEW: Golf courses, parks/playgrounds, sports fields, tennis courts, basketball courts, frisbee golf locations, cycling trails, horse riding facilities and other outdoor amenities are now closed.
  • Seasonal campgrounds are closed. Campsites can only be made available for trailers and recreational vehicles that are: i) used by individuals who need housing and ii) permitted to be there by the terms of a full-season contract. Only campsites with electricity, water services, and sewage disposal facilities can be provided. All recreational facilities and shared facilities (other than washrooms and showers) in the campground must be closed.
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Additional Resources:

COVID-19 Emergency and Stay-at-Home Order – Government of Ontario

Click on the following links for additional support:

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