Nearly all non-essential businesses to close as province enters strict lockdown on December 26
PREMIER DOUG FORD has announced a province-wide lockdown that will look similar to the shutdown back in March, with only essential businesses being allowed to remain open.
The province-wide lockdown will look similar to the shutdown back in March, with only essential businesses being allowed to remain open.
The lockdown will begin at 12:01 a.m. on December 26 and will last for 28 days in the southern portions of the province and 14 days in the northern parts.
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“This difficult action is without a doubt necessary to save lives and prevent our hospitals from being overwhelmed in the coming weeks,” Ford said. “Make no mistake, thousands of lives are at stake right now.”
The lockdown restrictions include:
• No indoor public events or social gatherings will be allowed, except with members of the same household.
• Elementary schools in southern Ontario can also resume in-person learning on January 11, but secondary schools students in southern Ontario won’t be allowed to return to the classroom until Jan. 25.
• Child care centres will remain open for the duration of the lockdown, the government said.
• Under the lockdown orders, bars and restaurants may only remain open for takeout.
• Shopping malls will be closed for in-person retail, with members of the public only permitted to access the facilities for essential services. Hardware stores can only remain open for curbside pickup.
• Personal care services, casinos, zoos, and museums are among some of the other businesses that will be forced to close. Libraries are allowed to remain open for curbside pickup.
• All ski hills in Ontario will close during the lockdown.
The government is also asking that people do not leave home unless it is for an essential reason and only travel outside their own region if absolutely necessary. Anyone who travels within Canada during the province-wide shutdown is being asked to self-isolate upon their return to Ontario. Toronto, Peel Region, York Region and Windsor-Essex are already under lockdown. Hamilton joined the grey zone of the province’s tiered COVID-19 framework on Monday.