TORONTO – Ontario is launching three regions into new COVID-19 levels from Monday, imposing tighter restrictions on businesses and residents in some areas of the province.
Middlesex-London Health Unit and Thunder Bay District Health Unit move to Orange-Limit Halliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit Yellow-Protect On December 7th.
“Over the past seven days, we have seen trends in key public health indicators in these three areas continue in the wrong direction,” Health Minister Christine Elliott said in a statement on Friday. “By taking proactive action and moving these areas to a higher level in the framework, we are helping them reduce congestion in the community and prevent widespread closures. The health and well-being of Antarians is our priority.”
The York region, which is on the verge of being moved to lockdown, has refrained from moving to that level this week.
The York Region saw an average of 111 new cases per 100,000 residents last week, which is higher than Toronto’s weekly incidence rate when placed under lockdown on November 23rd.
Health Medical Officer Kareem Kurzi on Thursday said he would not support the York Region lockdown.
He added that additional restrictions on lockdown status, such as the complete closure of bars, restaurants, gyms and personal care services, would not have a major impact on the area.
“We have just done some modeling and the modeling shows that the profit by going into the lockdown is low, so with the mobility data showing a 20 per cent reduction in mobility since we went into the red zone, we hopefully can convince the province to keep us still in the red zone,” he told CP24.
All other health units are at current levels, including those in Toronto and the Peel Region lockdown.
They are usually kept there for at least 28 days after moving an area to a new level of tire framework.
With files from Chris Fox of CP24.