Provincial government announces Three-Step Roadmap to reopen the province
Tim Brody - Editor
Golf courses and many outdoor recreational amenities were allowed to reopen on May 22, with restrictions in place such as the need to maintain physical distancing, as part of the provincial government’s Three-Step Roadmap to safely reopen the province.
The province’s Roadmap to Reopen, announced on May 20, outlines three steps to easing public health measures, guided by the following principles:
Step One: An initial focus on resuming outdoor activities with smaller crowds where the risk of transmission is lower, and permitting retail with restrictions. This includes allowing outdoor gatherings of up to 10 people, outdoor dining with up to four people per table and non-essential retail at 15 per cent capacity.
Step Two: Further expanding outdoor activities and resuming limited indoor services with small numbers of people where face coverings are worn. This includes outdoor gatherings of up to 25 people, outdoor sports and leagues, overnight camps, personal care services where face coverings can be worn and with capacity limits, as well as indoor religious services, rites or ceremony gatherings at 15 per cent capacity.
Step Three: Expanding access to indoor settings, with restrictions, including where there are larger numbers of people and where face coverings can’t always be worn. This includes indoor sports and recreational fitness; indoor dining, museums, art galleries and libraries, and casinos and bingo halls, with capacity limits.
According to a news release issued by the provincial government, “The province will remain in each step for at least 21 days to evaluate any impacts on key public health and health system indicators. If at the end of the 21 days, the following vaccination thresholds have been met, along with positive trends in other key public health and health system indicators, then the province will move to the next step:
Step 1: 60 per cent of adults vaccinated with one dose.
Step 2: 70 per cent of adults vaccinated with one dose and 20 per cent vaccinated with two doses.
Step 3: 70 to 80 per cent of adults vaccinated with one dose and 25 per cent vaccinated with two doses.
“Based on current trends in key health indicators, including the provincial vaccination rate, the government expects to enter Step One of the Roadmap the week of June 14, 2021. The province will confirm closer to the expected start of Step One.”
“While we know that now is not yet the moment to reopen, Ontarians deserve to know the path forward on what we will carefully reopen and when, starting with the settings we know are safest,” informed Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health. “Brighter days are ahead and we believe this Roadmap represents a path out of the pandemic and will encourage Ontarians to get vaccinated and to continue following public health advice.”
The province-wide emergency brake restrictions remain in effect while the province assesses when it will be moving to Step One of the roadmap with the Stay at Home order expiring on June 2.
Further details on the province’s Roadmap to Reopen can be found at https://news.ontario.ca/en/backgrounder/1000159/roadmap-to-reopen.