Public Advisory

There is a Provincial Order in place, effective October 9th, 2020, mandating the use of face coverings in all public indoor settings across the province, such as businesses, facilities and workplaces, with limited exemptions.  For details, visit the Face Masks and Face Coverings in Ontario. Also view the Grey Bruce Health Unit FAQ for Masks and Face Coverings.

Recovery Phase

 

There are provincial and local plans for the recovery phase of the COVID-19 outbreak. There will be a gradual, staged approach to reopening businesses, services and public spaces. This page will be updated as details emerge from the province and local information becomes available.

 


As announced August 14, 2020, the Ontario government is applying a capacity limit on a per room basis for sport, fitness and recreation facilities. Beginning August 15, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., these facilities can have up to 50 patrons for each indoor sport or fitness room, while ensuring physical distancing of at least two metres.


July 31, 2020 - Ontario Implementing Additional Measures at Bars and Restaurants to Help Limit the Spread of COVID-19

 

Ontario government, in consultation with the Associate Chief Medical Officer of Health, has amended orders O. Reg 364/20 implementing additional measures for restaurants, bars, and other food or drink establishments, as the province carefully and gradually reopens. In order to keep patrons of restaurants, bars, and other food or drink establishments safe, the amended orders will implement the following measures:  

 

NEW (July 31, 2020)

Patrons must be seated at all times in any area of the establishment in which food or drink is permitted except,

  1. while entering the area and while moving to their table,
  2. while placing or picking up an order,
  3. while paying for an order,
  4. while exiting the area,
  5. while going to or returning from a washroom,
  6. while lining up to do anything described in subparagraphs i to v, or
  7. where necessary for the purposes of health and safety.

NEW (AUGUST 7, 2020)

Bars and restaurants in Ontario will be required to keep client logs for a period of 30 days and to disclose the client logs to the medical officer of health or an inspector under the Health Protection and Promotion Act on request, which will support case and contact tracing. The person responsible for the establishment must,

  1. record the name and contact information of every patron who enters an indoor or outdoor dining area in the establishment, other than patrons who temporarily enter the area to place, pick up or pay for a takeout order,
  2. maintain the records for a period of at least one month, and
  3. only disclose the records to a medical officer of health or an inspector under the Health Protection and Promotion Act on request for a purpose specified in section 2 of that Act or as otherwise required by law.

Effective Friday July 17, select areas of Ontario, including Grey Bruce, will move to Stage 3 of the province's reopening plan. Stage 3 will limit indoor gatherings to a maximum of 50 people and outdoor gatherings to a limit of 100 people. Physical distancing rules of 2 metres still apply outside of your household or social circle.  A number of new businesses including movie theatres and fitness centres will also be able to open during Phase 3 if they are able to do so safely.

A Framework for Reopening our Province - Stage3

Food Premises Operation

 

Effective Friday, June 12, the province will increase the limit on social gatherings from five to 10 people across the province, regardless of whether a region has moved to Stage 2. Additionally, all places of worship in Ontario will also be permitted to open with physical distancing in place and attendance limited to no more than 30 per cent of the building capacity to ensure the safety of worshippers.

Sample Reopening Plan for Places of Worship

Information for Faith and Religious Organizations

The Grey Bruce Health Unit region is one of 24 regions in the province allowed to move into Stage 2 on Friday, June 12. Businesses and services permitted to reopen with proper health and safety measures in place in regions entering Stage 2 include:

Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act - Stage 2

  • Outdoor dine-in services at restaurants, bars and other establishments, including patios, curbside, parking lots and adjacent properties;
  • Select personal and personal care services with the proper health and safety measures in place, including tattoo parlours, barber shops, hair salons and beauty salons - Guidance for Personal Service Settings during COVID-19;
  • Shopping malls under existing restrictions, including food services reopening for take-out and outdoor dining only;
  • Tour and guide services, such as bike and walking, bus and boat tours, as well as tasting and tours for wineries, breweries and distilleries;
  • Water recreational facilities such as outdoor splash pads and wading pools, and all swimming pools;
  • Beach access and additional camping at Ontario Parks;
  • Camping at private campgrounds;
  • Outdoor-only recreational facilities and training for outdoor team sports, with limits to enable physical distancing;
  • Drive-in and drive-through venues for theatres, concerts, animal attractions and cultural appreciation, such as art installations;
  • Film and television production activities, with limits to enable physical distancing; and
  • Weddings and funerals, with limits on social gatherings to 10 people.

On June 5th, restrictions on short term rentals will be lifted. Short term rentals include lodges, cabins, cottages, homes, condominiums and B&Bs will be allowed to resume operations in Ontario. While the provision of short-term rental accommodation may resume, access to pools, fitness centres, meeting rooms and other recreational facilities that may be part of the operations of these businesses is prohibited. Restaurants and/or dining facilities will be subject to the same requirements as hotels and motels and will not be permitted to be open. The advice from the Chief Medical Officer of Health continues to apply. Individuals should maintain physical distancing with members outside of their immediate household.

On June 2, the Province of Ontario, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, is extending the provincial Declaration of Emergency to June 30. The decision supports the government's efforts to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak and protect the health and safety of Ontarians as the province reopens in a measured and responsible way.

On May 14th, the Ontario government announced the retailers, seasonal businesses and health and community service providers who will be permitted to open or expand their services on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., provided that the general trend on health indicators continues to improve as part of the first stage of the government's reopening framework. The government also announced additional seasonal services and activities will be permitted to open as early as Saturday May 16, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., in time for the Victoria Day long weekend, as key public health indicators continue to show progress.

As soon as 12:01 a.m. on Saturday, May 16, 2020:

  • Golf courses will be able to open, with clubhouses open only for washrooms and restaurants open only for take-out.
  • Marinas, boat clubs and public boat launches may open for recreational use.
  • Private parks and campgrounds may open to enable preparation for the season and to allow access for trailers and recreational vehicles whose owners have a full season contract.
  • Businesses that board animals, such as stables, may allow boarders to visit, care for or ride their animal.

As soon as Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 12:01 a.m. the following businesses and services may open:

  • Retail services that are not in shopping malls and have separate street-front entrances with measures in place that can enable physical distancing, such as limiting the number of customers in the store at any one time and booking appointments beforehand or on the spot.
  • Seasonal businesses and recreational activities for individual or single competitors, including training and sport competitions conducted by a recognized national or provincial sport organization. This includes indoor and outdoor non-team sport competitions that can be played while maintaining physical distancing and without spectators, such as tennis, track and field and horse racing.
  • Animal services, specifically pet care services, such as grooming and training, and regular veterinary appointments.
  • Indoor and outdoor household services that can follow public health guidelines, such as housekeepers, cooks, cleaning and maintenance.
  • Lifting essential workplace limits on construction.

For more information, visit the News Release:  Ontario Announces Additional Workplaces that can Reopen. Additional Seasonal, retail and household businesses must follow public health guidelines.

On May 9th, the Ontario government announced the opening of provincial parks and conservation reserves for limited day-use access. The first areas will open on Monday May 11, 2020, with the remaining areas opening on Friday May 15, 2020. At this time, recreational activities will be limited to walking, hiking, biking and birdwatching. For more, visit the news release from the Ontario Government: Ontario Opening Provincial Parks and Conservation Reserves

On May 6th, Ontario announced further easing of restrictions for retail stores and essential construction. The Ontario government is allowing more retail stores to reopen as long as they follow strict health and safety guidelines. The details are as follows:

May 8 at 12:01 a.m. garden centres and nurseries will be able to open for in-store payment and purchases

May 9 at 12:01 a.m. hardware stores and safety supply stores will be able to open for in-store payment and purchases

May 11 at 12.01 a.m. retail stores with a street entrance can provide curbside pick-up and delivery

The government is also allowing below-grade multi-unit residential construction projects to resume work.

For more, visit the news release from the Ontario Government: Ontario Further Eases Restrictions on Retail Stores and Essential Construction During COVID-19.

 

As of Monday May 4th, the Province has indicated the following list of businesses can operate and open under strict guidelines:

  • Garden centres and nurseries with curbside pick-up and delivery only;
  • Lawn care and landscaping;
  • Additional essential construction projects that include:
    • shipping and logistics;
    • broadband, telecommunications, and digital infrastructure;
    • any other project that supports the improved delivery of goods and services;
    • municipal projects;
    • colleges and universities;
    • child care centres;
    • schools; and
    • site preparation, excavation, and servicing for institutional, commercial, industrial and residential development;
  • Automatic and self-serve car washes;
  • Auto dealerships, open by appointment only;
  • Golf courses may prepare their courses for the upcoming season, but not open to the public; and
  • Marinas may also begin preparations for the recreational boating season by servicing boats and other watercraft and placing boats in the water, but not open to the public. Boats and watercraft must be secured to a dock in the marina until public access is allowed.

 

Effective Friday July 17, select areas of Ontario, including Grey Bruce, moved to Stage 3 of the province's reopening plan. Stage 3 limits indoor gatherings to a maximum of 50 people and outdoor gatherings to a limit of 100 people. Physical distancing rules of 2 metres still apply outside of your household or social circle.  A number of new businesses including movie theatres and fitness centres will also be able to open during Phase 3 if they are able to do so safely.

A Framework for Reopening our Province - Stage3

 

Ontario’s response to COVID‑19

On April 27, the Ontario government released A Framework for Reopening our Province, which outlines the criteria health experts will use to advise the government on loosening of emergency measures, as well as guiding principles for the safe, gradual reopening of businesses, services and public spaces. Despite these relaxed measures, everyone must remain vigilant in ensuring the outbreak continues to trend downwards. Physical distancing and proper hand hygiene remain very important.

 

Phase 1: Protect and support

The government’s primary focus is on protecting the health and well-being of individuals and families, supporting frontline health care workers, essential workers and businesses, and providing immediate support to protect people and jobs. Emergency orders put in place to protect people include: the closure of non-essential workplaces, outdoor amenities in parks, recreational areas and public places, as well as bars and restaurants; restrictions on social gatherings; and limiting staff from working in more than one retirement home, long-term care home or congregate care setting.

Phase 2: Restart

The government will take a careful, stage-by-stage approach to loosening emergency measures and reopening Ontario’s economy. Public health and workplace safety will remain the top priority, while balancing the needs of people and businesses. Public health officials will carefully monitor each stage for two-to-four weeks, as they assess the evolution of the COVID‑19 outbreak to determine if it is necessary to change course to maintain public health. The government will also continue to issue guidelines for workplace safety..

A Framework for Reopening our Province

 

 

Reopening will be gradual and occur in stages. Each stage will last at least two to four weeks. At every point Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health will be able to tighten certain restrictions, extend the stage or advise that the province can move into the next phase. Everyday actions to protect people's health, like physical distancing, frequent hand washing and staying home when ill, will continue through each stage.

  • Stage 1 - In the first stage, Ontario will consider:
    • opening select workplaces that can meet current public health guidelines
    • allowing essential gatherings of a limited number of people
    • opening some outdoor spaces
    • continued protections for vulnerable populations
    • offering of some non-urgent and scheduled surgeries, and other health care services by hospitals
  • Stage 2 - In the second stage, Ontario will consider:
    • opening more workplaces with significant mitigation plans
    • opening more public spaces
    • allowing some larger public gatherings
    • continued protections for vulnerable populations
  • Stage 3 - In the final stage, Ontario will consider:
    • opening all workplaces responsibly
    • relaxing restrictions on public gatherings
    • continued protections for vulnerable populations

 

Ontario is taking a regional approach, with regions that demonstrate readiness based on key public health indicators reopening first.

Phase 3: Recover

Ensuring the health and safety of the public and workers will continue to be a top priority as Ontario transitions to a “new normal.” The government will partner with businesses and other sectors to lead Ontario’s economic recovery. The focus will be on creating jobs and opportunity across the province, while working to restore long‑term prosperity for the benefit of every individual and family in Ontario.

Guidelines are available for essential businesses currently in operation and for businesses to prepare to gradually reopen when they are able to do so. Monitor provincial and local information for updates regarding what types of businesses and activities are permitted in accordance with the current stage of recovery.

Visit the Government of Ontario’s resources to prevent COVID-19 in the workplace webpage to find sector-specific guidelines and posters. General and sector-specific guidelines include actions employers can take to minimize the spread of COVID-19 and protect their workers and customers.

Visit the Business, Employee and Organization section of our website to learn more.

 

Share this page