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Ontario moves Southwestern Public Health into Yellow-Protect Tier of COVID-19 Framework effective 12:01 a.m. Monday, November 16, 2020

Date: November 13, 2020
To: Employers in Oxford County, Elgin County, and the City of St. Thomas

I write you today to inform you that the Province of Ontario has moved Southwestern Public Health in to the Yellow-Protect tier of the COVID-19 Keeping Ontario Safe and Open Framework.

The restrictions associated with this tier are effective as of 12:01 a.m. on Monday, November 16, 2020 and will remain in place for at least 28 days (unless cases continue to rise and we’re moved to a higher level of control).
This decision was made to protect our community before the COVID-19 situation becomes unmanageable. Our health unit supports Ontario’s decision to increase restrictions based on local risk and rising cases in our region.
As an owner or operator of a business in our region, it is your responsibility to review and follow under the regional Letter of Instruction for Face Coverings and guidance set by the Province of Ontario during COVID-19, as regulated under the Reopening Ontario Act (A Flexible Response to COVID-19).

While the Yellow-Protect tier has many of the same restrictions as the Green-Prevent tier for the community, there are new restrictions that impact select businesses, including:

1. Bars, restaurants, food premises, meeting and event spaces

  • Must have a safety plan available upon request
  • Limit operating hours; establishments must close at midnight
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9am to 11pm
  • No consumption of liquor permitted between 12am to 9am.
  • Require contact information for all seated patrons
  • Limit of 6 people may be seated together
  • Limit volume of music to be no louder than the volume of a normal conversation

2. Sports and Recreational Fitness Activities

  • Must have a safety plan available upon request
  • Face coverings required except when exercising
  • Must increase the space between patrons to 3m where there are weight/weight machines and exercise/fitness classes
  • Recreational programs limited to 10 people per room indoors, 25 outdoors
  • Require contact information for all patrons and attendance for team sports
  • Require reservations for entry (only one reservation for teams is required)

3. Retail

  • Malls must have a safety plan available upon request
  • Limit volume of music to be no louder than the volume of a normal conversation

4. Personal Care Services

  • Must have a safety plan available upon request
  • Require contact information from all patrons

5. Cinemas, Performing Arts Facilities, Casinos, Bingo Halls and Gaming Establishments

  • Must have a safety plan available upon request
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9am to 11pm
  • No consumption of liquor permitted between 12am to 9am.
  • Require contact information from all patrons

A full list of the Yellow-Protect tier restrictions is available on the Ontario.ca website.

This change will be communicated via social media, news media, targeted letters to Chambers of Commerce members, and on our website.

Local public health guidance and resources will be updated as quickly as possible at swpublichealth.ca/WorkplacesCOVID19. Call 1-800-922-0096 ext. 9 if you have questions.
Decisions to move in and out of these colour-coded tiers are evaluated weekly by the Province of Ontario in consultation with Southwestern Public Health. We ask businesses and the community to be flexible and adaptive to these changes that help protect our community from COVID-19.

Sincerely,
Dr. Joyce Lock
Medical Officer of Health
Southwestern Public Health
 

 

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