On May 20, 2021, the Ontario Government unveiled its “Roadmap to Reopen” the Province from its current shutdown. The Government’s Roadmap includes a three-step plan to completely reopen Ontario.
On Friday, June 11, 2021, at 12:01 a.m., the Ontario government will enter Step One of its Roadmap to Reopen, a few days ahead of its target date of Monday, June 14, 2021.
Step One of the Roadmap focuses on the resumption of more outdoor activities with smaller crowds where risk of transmission is lower. It will also permit more limited indoor settings to be open with restrictions.
Step One of the Roadmap to Reopen
Pursuant to the Ontario Regulation 82/20 (available here), some of the key changes in Step One include but are not limited to:
Construction activities or projects and related services that support construction activities or projects, including demolition services, will be permitted.
- Outdoor social gatherings and organized public events with up to 10 people will be permitted. This includes outdoor religious services, rites, or ceremonies, including wedding services and funeral services, capped at the number of people that can maintain a physical distance of two metres.
- Indoor religious services, rites, or ceremonies, including wedding services and funeral services permitted at up to 15 per cent capacity of the particular room.
The following businesses will be allowed to operate at a 25 percent capacity:
- Supermarkets, grocery stores, convenience stores, indoor farmers’ markets and other stores that primarily sell food,
- Discount and big box retailers selling groceries.
- 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.
- Optical stores that sell prescription eyewear to the public.
- Retail stores operated by telecommunications providers.
- Stores that sell liquor, including beer, wine and spirits.
- Outdoor garden centres and plant nurseries.
- Indoor greenhouses.
All other non-essential retail businesses may open but must ensure that they do not exceed 15 per cent capacity.
- Outdoor dining at restaurants, bars, food trucks, concession stands and other food or drink establishments will be permitted with up to four people per table, unless everyone seated at the table is:
- a member of the same household,
- a member of up to one other household who lives alone,
- or a caregiver for any member of either household.
- The total number of patrons permitted to be seated outdoors at the establishment must be limited to the number that can maintain a physical distance of at least two metres from every other person at the establishment.
- Outdoor fitness classes, outdoor groups in personal training and outdoor individual/team sport training will be permitted with up to 10 people, among other restrictions;
- Day camps for children permitted to operate in a manner consistent with the safety guidelines for COVID-19 produced by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health;
- Overnight camping at campgrounds and campsites, including Ontario Parks, and short-term rentals will be permitted;
- Concert venues, theatres and cinemas may open outdoors for the purpose of rehearsing or performing a recorded or broadcasted concert, artistic event, theatrical performance or other performance with no more than 10 performers, among other restrictions;
- Outdoor horse racing tracks and motor speedways permitted to operate without spectators; and
- Outdoor attractions such as zoos, landmarks, historic sites, botanical gardens with capacity and other restrictions will be permitted.
The Province states that it will remain in Step One for at least 21 days to evaluate any impacts on key public health and health system indicators. If at the end of the 21 days the province has vaccinated 70 per cent of adults with one dose and 20 per cent of adults with two doses and there are continued improvements in other key public health and health system indicators, the province will move to Step Two of the Roadmap.
The official Ontario Government press release can be found here.
If you have any questions about this topic, other COVID-19 related questions, or would like assistance with developing and/or reviewing pandemic plans, please do not hesitate to contact a Mathews Dinsdale lawyer, or refer to the Firm’s COVID-19 website resources.