Many restriction still in place after Monday: Kyle

Many restrictions will continue to be in place after Monday’s easing under the provincial reopening plans, according to Durham Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Robert Kyle.

Ontario announced 0n January 20 that it will cautiously and gradually ease public health restrictions beginning January 31.

The province will begin lifting public health measures as follows:

  • Social gathering limits will increase to 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors.
  • Capacity at organized public events will increase to 25 people indoors.
  • Capacity limits will be increased or maintained at 50 per cent in most indoor public settings (e.g., restaurants, gyms, cinemas, meeting and event spaces, museums, settings for religious services, rites, or ceremonies, etc.).
  • Indoor spectator areas of facilities such as those used for sporting events, concert venues, and theatres can operate at 50 per cent seated capacity or 500 people, whichever is less.

Many restrictions will remain in place including:

  • Proof of vaccination requirements continue to apply in existing settings.
  • Singing and dancing in restaurants and bars will not be allowed except for workers or performers.
  • Food or drink services are permitted at many establishments (e.g., indoor sporting events, concert venues, theatres and cinemas, bingo halls and other gaming establishments, etc.), provided patrons remain seated while consuming food or drink.
  • The number of patrons permitted to be seated at a table in bars and restaurants, meeting and event spaces and other venues where food or drink is sold or served will be limited to 10 people.

Booster rates up

Dr. Kyle said, locally, vaccination rates continue to improve and the number of eligible residents who have received a booster dose is steadily increasing. “Almost 50 per cent of adults 18 and over have received a primary series of Covid-19 vaccine and a booster. I am also pleased to share that more than 50 per cent of children five to 11-years old have received at least one dose of Covid-19 vaccine. Improved vaccination rates will help to limit the spread of Covid-19 and will help support the province’s efforts to gradually ease restrictions. Please visit durham.ca/vaccinetracker for the latest vaccine coverage information.”

Health Department staff is working to update information and guidance to local businesses and residents, which will be available in the next few days at durham.ca/Covid-19Guidance. For additional information, residents may also refer to the province’s updated plan to safely reopen Ontario available at https://Covid-19.ontario.ca.

“As the province begins to ease restrictions, I encourage residents to remain vigilant. Following public health measures including proper hand hygiene, wearing a mask, physical distancing, and remaining home when experiencing symptoms will continue to be very important as we work together to move past the latest wave of Covid-19, driven by the Omicron variant,” added Dr. Kyle.

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