Member Update, December 22, 2020

Ontario Announces Provincewide Shutdown to Stop Spread of COVID-19

Yesterday, Ontario announced that effective December 26 at 12:01 am there will be a Provincewide Shutdown. The restrictions are in effect for all of Ontario from Saturday, December 26, 2020 to Saturday, January 9, 2021. The restrictions would remain in effect from Saturday, January 9, 2021 to Saturday, January 23, 2021 for all 27 public health unit regions in Southern Ontario.

Measures include, but are not limited to:

  • Restricting indoor events and social gatherings to members of the same household. Individuals who live alone may consider having exclusive close contact with one other household.
  • Prohibiting in-person shopping in most retail settings, with adjusted capacity limits for retailers selling groceries and medication.
  • Restricting indoor access to shopping malls, with options for designated pickup areas.
  • Prohibiting indoor and outdoor dining. Restaurants, bars and other food or drink establishments will be permitted to operate by take out, drive-through, and delivery only.

Health care and social services are considered essential and are permitted to remain open under certain conditions. Members are advised to review Ontario’s summary document of lockdown measures for specifics on

  • General Public Health Measures for all Businesses, Organizations and Facilities including requirements for visitor screening, face coverings, capacity limits, use of personal protective equipment (PPE), physical distancing, cleaning and disinfection and the creation of an organization safety plan; (pp.4-6)
  • Sector-specific requirements for:
    • community services (p.18)
    • health care and social services (p.20)
    • meeting and/or event space (p.11)
    • requirements for third-party businesses permitted to open including real estate (p.16), professional services (p.14), telecommunications and IT (p.17) construction (p.17), and maintenance (p.18)

With the impacts of social isolation on mental health and well-being, members are encouraged to direct staff and tenants to the province’s COVID-19: Support for People website which has information about many free mental health services and supports. Providers coordinating tenant outreach and wellness checks can also find templates and policies to support this work in ONPHA COVID-19 Resource Hub under Tenants and Community.

Additional Resources:

Any questions about resources for employees and or how to stay safe can be directed to Please note our office will be closed starting noon on December 24 until January 4, 2021.

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