The Regional Municipality Of York

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Public Health Safety Measures

On January 12, 2021, the Government of Ontario declared a second provincial state of emergency under section 7.0.1 (1) of the  Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMPCA). Everyone must follow the orders under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and the Reopening Ontario Act.

The province has enhanced its public health and workplace safety measures mandated under the provincewide shutdown, including issuing a stay-at-home order that is effective January 14 at 12:01 a.m., and requires everyone to remain at home with exceptions only for essential purposes. More information on what is deemed essential can be found in Ontario Regulation 11/21.

Businesses impacted by the provincewide shutdown are eligible for Ontario Small Business Support Grant. Essential businesses that are allowed to remain open will not be eligible for this grant.

Last updated: Friday, January 15, 2021

General Safety Measures

Effective January 14 at 12:01 a.m. the following public health safety measures are applicable to gatherings, workplaces requirements and face coverings:

  • Individuals are required to remain at home with exceptions only for essential purposes (essential work, groceries/pharmacy, health care, assisting vulnerable individuals or exercise and physical activity)
  • Physical distancing to be maintained for individuals outside of one’s household
  • Individuals are required work remotely, with limited exceptions where on-site work is necessary
  • Workplaces are required to screen all employees at the start of each day/shift
  • Every person in the premises of a business or organization that is open must wear a face mask or covering that covers their mouth, nose and chin, when they are in indoor areas of the premises, with limited exemptions; face coverings are required in all indoor public spaces, indoor workplaces, and outdoors when physical distancing cannot be maintained or if wearing one is required
  • Worker protections, such as personal protective equipment (PPE) including masks and eye protection, are required where patrons without face coverings are within 2 metres of workers (indoors and in the absence of a Plexiglas or some other impermeable barrier)
  • Non-essential travel should be avoided and traveling outside your region or out-of-province should be limited to essential purposes only
  • Individuals and families who arrive or return to Ontario from another Canadian province should self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival; individuals returning from outside of Canada are required to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival
  • Businesses or places that are open shall ensure that equipment, washrooms, locker rooms, change rooms and showers that are accessible to the public are cleaned and disinfected as frequently as is necessary to maintain a sanitary condition

Gathering Limits

  • No indoor organized public events and social gatherings, except with members of the same household; individuals who live alone, including seniors, may consider having exclusive, close contact with another household to help reduce the negative impacts of social isolation
  • Gathering limit for outdoor organized public events and social gatherings is limited to 5 people with physical distancing in place and in compliance with rules on face coverings
  • Gathering limit for religious services, rites or ceremonies, including wedding ceremonies and funeral services, is limited to:
    • 10 people indoors with physical distancing in place and in compliance with rules on face coverings
    • 10 people outdoors with physical distancing in place and in compliance with rules on face coverings
  • Virtual and drive-in wedding services, funeral services and religious services, rites or ceremonies are permitted; vehicles must be positioned at least 2 metres from other vehicles and each person attending must remain in their vehicles (restroom and health and safety exceptions may apply)

Avoid Travel

Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer and Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health have advised against all non-essential travel. Visit travel.gc.ca for the latest travel advice.

If you have returned from travel, you may have been exposed to COVID-19 by airplane, cruise ship or train (any public conveyance). Being aware of the risk can help you take the necessary steps to protect your health and the health of others around you. Visit Government of Canada for locations where you may have been exposed to COVID-19.

If you have returned from international travel, including the United States

Self-isolate for 14 days. Stay home and only leave your house if you need urgent medical attention. This means go straight home, do not stop for groceries and avoid close contact with others, even in your home.

The Government of Canada has amended the emergency order under the Quarantine Act to mandate all who arrive in Canada by land, sea or air, whether or not they have symptoms, to self-isolate or quarantine for 14 days. Returning travellers must demonstrate that they have an appropriate self-isolation plan with access to food and medication. People without an appropriate plan will have to self-isolate in a location selected by the Chief Public Health Officer, such as a hotel room, until their quarantine period is over. For more information, visit Government of Canada COVID-19.

If you have returned from travel and you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, have been exposed to a close contact with COVID-19 or are concerned about your own health, please visit Symptoms, Transmission, Treatment, and Testing to learn about next steps.


Sector Specific Safety Measures Currently in Effect

Additional Restrictions and Closures

  • Museums and cultural amenity facilities (e.g. art galleries, science centres, historic sites) are to be closed indoors; drive-in or drive through attendance is permitted
  • Film and television production, including all supporting activities such as hair, makeup and wardrobe, are permitted to remain open under certain conditions (no studio audiences, physical distancing must be maintained on set except where necessary for the filming of the film or television production, appropriate personal protective equipment must be worn)
  • Film and television post-production, visual effects and animation studios are permitted
  • Book and periodical production, publishing and distribution businesses are permitted
  • Interactive digital media businesses, including computer system software or application developers and publishers, and video game developers and publishers are permitted
  • Amusement parks, water parks, motorsports, bathhouses and sex clubs are prohibited
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Animal Services, Zoos and Aquariums

  • Businesses that operate pet services are no longer permitted to open, except pet training services exclusively for service animals
  • Veterinary services can now only be provided if they are necessary for the immediate health and welfare of the animal or provided through curbside pick-up and drop-off of the animal
  • Other businesses that provide services to animals, including farms, boarding kennels, stables, animal shelters and research facilities, can only provide services that are necessary for animals' health and welfare. 
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Cinemas and Performing Arts Facilities

Cinemas, theatres, concert and performing arts venues are to be closed, including drive-in or drive through event.

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Construction

  • Non-essential construction is further restricted
  • Permitted construction activities or projects and related services, including land surveying and demolition services, must be enhanced with workplace testing
  • Businesses must follow public health measures, should review the workplace safety guidelines and will be subject to additional enforcement measures to ensure compliance
  • Permitted projects include:
    • Construction projects and services associated with the health care sector and long-term care, including new facilities, expansions, renovations and conversion of spaces that could be repurposed for health care space
    • Construction projects and services required to ensure safe and reliable operations of, or to provide new capacity in, provincial and municipal infrastructure, including transit, transportation, energy, mining and justice sectors beyond the day-to-day maintenance
    • Construction projects and services that support the operations of, and provide new capacity in schools, colleges, universities, municipal infrastructure and child care centres within the meaning of the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014
    • Construction projects under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program
    • Construction projects and services that support the operations of Broadband internet and cellular technologies and services
    • Critical industrial construction activities required for the maintenance and operations of petrochemical plants and refineries; significant industrial petrochemical projects where preliminary work has already commenced; industrial construction and modifications to existing industrial structures limited solely to work necessary for the production, maintenance, and/or enhancement of Personal Protective Equipment, medical devices (such as ventilators), and other identified products directly related to combatting the COVID-19 pandemic
    • Construction projects that are due to be completed before July 2021 and that would provide additional capacity in the production, processing, manufacturing or distribution of food, beverages or agricultural products
    • Construction projects that were commenced before January 12, 2021, and that would provide additional capacity for businesses that provide logistical support, distribution services, warehousing, storage or shipping and delivery services; or provide additional capacity in the operation and delivery of Information Technology (IT) services or telecommunications services
    • Residential construction projects where a footing permit has been granted for single family, semi-detached and townhomes, the project is a condominium, mixed use or other residential building, or the project involves renovations to residential properties and construction work was started before January 12, 2021
    • Construction to prepare a site for an institutional, commercial, industrial or residential development, including any necessary excavation, grading, roads or utilities infrastructure
    • Construction and maintenance activities necessary to temporarily close construction sites that have paused or are not active and to ensure ongoing public safety
    • Below-grade multi-unit residential construction projects, such as apartments and condominiums.
    • Construction on any project intended to provide affordable housing, shelter or supports for vulnerable persons
    • If the project is being funded in whole or in part by, or is being undertaken by, any of the following: the Crown in right of Canada or in right of Ontario; an agency of the Crown in right of Canada or in right of Ontario; a municipality; a service manager as defined in the Housing Services Act, 2011; or a registered charity and not for profit within the meaning of the Income Tax Act (Canada).
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Hotels, Motels, Rentals and Campgrounds

  • Hotels and motels are permitted to operate; recreation facilities that may be part of the operations of these businesses, such as pools, fitness centres, meeting rooms and other recreational facilities must remain closed
  • Campgrounds are only available for trailers and recreational vehicles that are used by individuals in need of housing, or are permitted to be there by the terms of a full season contract; only campsites with electricity, water service and facilities for sewage disposal may be provided for use
  • All recreational facilities and shared facilities on campgrounds, other than washrooms and showers, must be closed
  • No new reservations on short-term rentals are permitted, with the exception of individuals in need of housing
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Personal, Health, Household and Community Services

  • Services provided by Regulated Health Professionals (e.g. chiropractors, massage therapy, dentists, optometry, physiotherapy, psychotherapy, etc.) and professionals or organizations that provide in-person counselling services are permitted
  • Organizations that provide health care including retirement homes, hospitals, clinics, long-term care homes, independent health facilities and mental health and addictions counselling supports are permitted
  • Organizations and providers that deliver home care services or personal support services to seniors and persons with disabilities are permitted
  • Organizations that support the provision of food, shelter, safety or protection, and/or social services and other necessities of life to economically disadvantaged and other vulnerable individuals are permitted
  • Domestic services that support the operation of households are permitted, including housekeepers, cooks, maids and butlers, personal affairs management, nanny services and babysitters, other domestic personnel, house cleaning, indoor or outdoor painting, pool cleaning, general repairs, and outdoor cleaning and maintenance services
  • In-person personal services are prohibited, including those offered by personal shoppers, party and wedding planners, personal organizers, personal fitness or sports trainers, house sitters, and tour and guide services
  • All in-person driving instruction is prohibited except for drivers of commercial motor vehicles; only virtual instruction is permitted
  • Real estate agencies (including pre-sale construction) are permitted to operate; property showings must be by appointment only
  • Retail photo studio services must be closed; commercial and industrial photography is permitted
The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Places of Worship

  • Limits for religious services rites or ceremonies, including wedding services and funeral services, where physical distancing can be maintained (applies in any venue other than a private dwelling):
    • 10 people indoors with physical distancing in place and in compliance with rules on face coverings
    • 10 people outdoors with physical distancing in place and in compliance with rules on face coverings
  • Virtual and drive-in events and religious services, rites or ceremonies permitted
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Retail

  • Gas stations and fuel suppliers remain open
  • In-person retail shopping is generally not permitted, with limited exceptions, including:
    • Supermarkets, grocery stores, convenience stores and retailers selling groceries, provided capacity does not exceed 50% and the facility is in compliance with face covering rules
    • Pharmacies, provided capacity does not exceed 50% and the facility is in compliance with face covering rules
    • Discount retailers and big-box stores that sell groceries must not exceed capacity of 25% in any room open to the public, as long as physical distancing of 2 metres can be maintained and the facility is in compliance with face covering rules
  • Stores that sell liquor, beer, wine and spirits are permitted to be open between the hours of 9 a.m. and 8 p.m., with a maximum capacity of 25% in any room open to the public
  • Safety supply stores, businesses that sell, rent or repair assistive/mobility/medical devices and optical stores that sell prescription eyewear to the public are permitted to be open between the hours of 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. by appointment only, provided capacity does not exceed 50% and the facility is in compliance with face covering rules; curbside pick-up and delivery is also permitted
  • Retail establishments such as hardware stores, pet food stores, computer stores and retail outlets within malls are permitted to be open for curbside pick-up or delivery only, between the hours of 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.; items for curbside pick-up must be ordered in advance of arrival
  • Access to shopping malls is only permitted to access businesses or organizations permitted to be open (e.g. pharmacy, dentist, food court); malls may also establish designated pick-up points inside or adjacent to the mall
  • Mall food courts are permitted to be open for takeout only
  • Motor/recreational vehicle sales are permitted to be open for in-person shopping, by appointment only, between the hours of 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.; additional restrictions including prohibited areas of the establishment and pertaining to test drives apply
  • Garden centres and nurseries are permitted to provide products to patrons in a manner that allows patrons to remain outdoors at all times, including through curbside pick-up or delivery, between the hours of 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.; items for curbside pick-up must be ordered in advance of arrival
  • Outdoor markets, farmer’s markets and holiday markets are permitted, with restrictions, between the hours of 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Cannabis retailers are permitted to be open for curbside pick-up or delivery only, between the hours of 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.; items for curbside pick-up must be ordered in advance of arrival
  • Line-ups and patrons congregating outside venues must be managed by the venue, requiring 2-metre physical distancing and face coverings worn
  • Face coverings are required
  • safety plan must be available upon request
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Schools, Child Care, Day Camps

Schools

Schools in grey zones as of December 18, 2020, remain closed until at least February 10, 2021 - Windsor, Toronto, Peel, York and Hamilton. The following new health and safety measures will be introduced to further support protect students provincewide:
  • Mandatory masking for students in Grades 1-3
  • Masking requirements outdoors where physical distancing cannot be maintained
  • Enhanced screening protocols will be introduced where recommended by the Chief Medical Officer of Health. To support this, Ontario’s COVID-19 School and Child Care Screening Tool will be updated to reflect the new screening criteria
  • Expanded targeted testing

Post-secondary

Post-secondary institutions are to remain open for virtual instruction, with limited exceptions where in-person instruction is required (e.g., clinical training, trades), subject to physical distancing; in-person teaching (each instructional space at the institution at one time) and in-person examinations cannot exceed 10 persons, with limited exemptions.

Child Care

Child care for non-school aged children (and JK and kindergarten children not enrolled in school immediately prior to December 21, 2020) will remain open including child care offered in licensed centres and in home-based settings (licensed and unlicensed).

For regions (including York Region) where schools reopen for in-person learning on February 10, emergency child care for school-aged children of front-line workers will end on February 9. Before and after school programs will be authorized to resume on February 10.

In addition to the robust health and safety practices already in place in child care settings, the following new health and safety measures will be introduced to further protect children province-wide:

  • Enhanced screening to align with screening requirements at schools
  • Voluntary participation in targeted, asymptomatic testing

Day Camps

  • Closed


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Casinos, Bingo Halls and Gaming Establishments

  • Casinos, bingo halls and gaming establishments must be closed
  • Horse racing is permitted to operate for training purposes only; races are prohibited and no spectators are allowed
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Meeting and Event Spaces

  • Meeting and event spaces must remain closed, with limited exceptions including for:
    • Child care and day camps for children
    • Court services
    • Government services
    • Mental health and addiction support services (e.g. Alcoholics Anonymous) permitted with a maximum of 10 people
    • Provision of social service
  • Physical distancing rules apply
  • Name and contact information must be collected from every member of the public who attends a meeting, event or uses the space; records must be maintained for at least one month
  • Face coverings are required, except when eating or drinking
  • The venue’s safety plan must be available upon request
The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Personal Care Services

Personal care services must be closed, including:

  • Hair salons
  • Barber shops
  • Nail sails
  • Tanning studios
  • Tattoo parlours

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Restaurants, Bars and Food or Drink Establishments

  • Indoor and outdoor dining service are prohibited
  • Takeout, drive-through and delivery are permitted, including alcohol
  • Line-ups and patrons congregating outside the establishment must be managed by the establishment; patrons must maintain physical distance of at least 2 metres and wear a mask or face covering
  • Face coverings are required when entering an establishment
  • Worker protections, such as personal protective equipment (PPE) including masks and eye protection, are required where patrons without face coverings are within 2 metres of workers
  • Nightclubs and strip clubs are only permitted to operate as restaurant or bar (takeout, drive-through and delivery only)
  • Safety plan must be available upon request
The Regional Municipality of York en-US

Sports and Recreational Fitness

  • No person is permitted to use an indoor or outdoor recreational amenity that is to be closed
  • Facilities for indoor or outdoor sports and recreational fitness activities are closed except for sole use by high-performance athletes, including parasport athletes, and specified professional leagues (e.g. NHL, CFL, MLS, NBA)
  • Community centres, libraries and multi-purpose recreation facilities are permitted to open for specified purposes under Ontario Regulation 82/20, including child care services, day camps and social services
  • Libraries are permitted to be open for curbside pick-up or delivery; patrons must only be permitted to enter libraries to facilitate contactless drop-off and pick-up or to access computers, photocopiers or similar services
  • Outdoor recreational amenities, such as sports fields, courts, ice rinks and snow trails are permitted to open with restrictions, including no team sports; capacity limits and distancing measures must be followed
  • Ski hills are closed
  • Marinas and boating clubs, including the establishments’ clubhouses, restaurants, pools, meeting rooms, fitness centres or other recreational facilities on the premises are closed, with limited exceptions
  • Golf courses and driving ranges are permitted to be open outdoors only; indoor access is closed
  • Indoor shooting ranges are closed
  • Name and contact information must be collected from patrons; records must be maintained for at least one month
  • Face coverings are required, except when exercising
  • Safety plan must be available upon request
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Access York

Phone: 1-877-464-9675
TTY: 1-866-512-6228
(for deaf and hard of hearing)
accessyork@york.ca



Related Resources


COVID19 The Regional Municipality of York en-US Public Health Safety Measures Find out how we’re keeping York Region safe and open, including public health measures relevant to citizens.

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