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COVID-19

Partners and Municipalities

Ontario entered Step 1 of the province’s Roadmap to Reopen on Friday June 11, 2021 at 12:01 a.m.. We will remain in Step 1 for at least 21 days to allow the province to evaluate any impacts on key public health and health system indicators.

More information on the public health and workplace safety measures in place can be found on the province’s website and in O. Reg 82/20: Rules for Areas in Shutdown Zone and at Step 1 under the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act (ROA), 2020.

SMDHU and local municipalities may also implement local public health directions, bylaws, and policies that can exceed the provincial laws and recommendations. Employers should continue to consult with public health and their local municipality to ensure familiarity with the current laws and recommendations.

The information and resources on this page are updated regularly. Check back often for the newest updates.

Class Orders and Letters of Instruction

The following Section 22 and Section 29 orders (under the Health Protection and Promotion Act) and instructions (under the Reopening Ontario Act) have been issued in response to COVID-19 by SMDHU’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Charles Gardner:

Correspondence

June

June 9, 2021      |     June 2, 2021

May

May 26, 2021     |     May 19, 2021    |     May 12, 2021    |    May 5, 2021

April

April 28, 2021    |      April 21, 2021    |      April 14, 2021    |      April 7, 2021

March

March 31, 2021    |     March 24, 2021    |    March 17, 2021    |    March 10, 2021    |    March 3, 2021

 

Previous updates are available upon request.

Public Health Guidance

COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for Operators of Public Beaches (revised June 11, 2021) provides recommendations for municipalities to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 at public beaches.
A community garden has either individual or shared plots of land or garden beds on private or public land that community members can use to grow fresh fruits and vegetables. COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for Community Gardens (revised June 11, 2021) is for municipal staff, volunteers, and garden users to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 while using a shared garden space.

COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for Cooling Shelters (revised June 11, 2021) provides guidance and clarity for operating cooling shelters to reduce the risk of introducing and spreading COVID-19.

This document should be used in conjunction with existing cooling shelter operation and management plans, procedures, guidance, resources, and systems.

Under Step 1, day camps are permitted to operate in the following venues:

Meeting or event space; 

  • Community centre or multi-purpose recreational centre; 
  • Public library; 
  • School or private school.

According to the Child Care and Early Years Act, day camps must: 

  • not operate for more than 13 weeks in a calendar year (subject to certain exceptions set out in regulations); 
  • not operate on days in which instruction is typically provided for pupils enrolled in schools; 
  • not operate at a person’s home; 
  • be operated for children who are four years old or older, or, if the camp is operated on or after September 1, for children who will attain the age of four in that calendar year. 
     

Updated guidance from the province is now available: COVID 19 Safety Guidelines for Day Camps (revised May 26, 2021). Public Health Ontario has also released two checklists to support COVID-19 preparedness and prevention in day camps: Pre-Camp Planning checklist (revised May 31, 2021) and Daily Operations checklist (revised May 31, 2021). 

For additional information, see SMDHU’s COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for Day Camps (revised: June 15, 2021).

The following guidance is intended to assist governing organizations, communities, and candidates in keeping themselves, volunteers, and community members safe while campaigning and voting during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This information is meant to supplement any advice or recommendations provided by the organization or community governing the election.

COVID-19 Public Health Guidance for Farmers’ Markets  (Revised June 11, 2021) is provided to assist in operating your farmers' market.

Annual assessments are conducted by public health inspectors (PHIs) at farmers’ markets to determine if any proposed vendors meet the requirements for Ontario Regulation 493/17. To assist with this process, we request that you submit the following documents to your public health inspector prior to commencing operations of a farmers' market:

Food banks and food donation centres provide essential services to residents and require continual donations from the community. COVID-19 Public Health Guidance For Food Banks and Donation Centres (revised June 11, 2021) provides guidance on the prevention and management of COVID-19.

Under Step 1, the following outdoor recreational amenities are permitted to be open under Schedule 8 of Ontario Regulation 82/20. If the amenity is not listed below it is not permitted to open.

  • Parks and recreational areas
  • Baseball diamonds
  • Batting cages
  • Soccer, football and sports fields
  • Tennis, platform tennis, table tennis and pickleball courts
  • Basketball courts
  • BMX parks
  • Skate parks
  • Golf courses and driving ranges
  • Frisbee golf locations
  • Cycling tracks
  • Trails
  • Horse riding facilities
  • Shooting ranges, including those operated by rod and gun clubs
  • Playgrounds
  • Portions of parks or recreational areas containing outdoor fitness equipment
  • Archery ranges
  • Boat and watercraft launches
  • Lawn game courts, including lawn bowling, bocce and croquet courts
  • Horseshoe pits 
  • Outdoor pools, splash pads, spray pads, whirlpools, wading pools and water slides

The above outdoor recreational amenities may open only if:

  • any person who enters or uses the amenity maintains a physical distance of at least 2 metres (6 feet) from any other person who is using the amenity (unless the members of the group are all members of the same household or one other person from outside that household who lives alone or is a caregiver for any member of the household);
  • any person engaging in physical exercise in the amenity, including by engaging in a training session, permitted sport or game (e.g. horseshoe, bocce, archery), must maintain a physical distance of at least 3 metres from any other person who is using the amenity;
  • other sports or games that are likely to result in individuals coming within 2 metres (6 feet) of each other are not practised or played; 
  • team sports are not practised or played with the exception of training sessions for members of a sports team that do not include games or scrimmage games. No more than 10 people may gather for a training session; 
  • more than one group of up to 10 people may gather for a team training session on a baseball diamond, sports field (including football and soccer) and basketball court as long as the groups maintain constant separation that is clear and identifiable; 
  • clubhouses on the premises must be closed, except to the extent that they are used in conjunction with an outdoor pool, splash pad, spray pad, whirlpool, wading pool or water slide, or provide access to equipment storage, a washroom or a portion of the amenity that is used to provide first aid.

Businesses that provide in-person teaching and instruction

Businesses that provide in-person teaching and instruction may operate at an outdoor recreational amenity if they meet the following conditions:

  • The instructional space for the in-person teaching and instruction must be outdoors. 
  • Students must be actively screened in accordance with the advice, recommendations and instructions of the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health before attending the instruction.
  • The students must maintain a physical distance of at least 2 metres (6 feet) from every other person in the instructional space, except where necessary for teaching and instruction that cannot be effectively provided if physical distancing is maintained.
  • The total number of students permitted to be in each instructional space at any one time must be limited to 10 persons which does not include the business’s employees, coaches, officials, or trainers.
  • In the event of more than one instructional space at an outdoor recreational amenity the groups must maintain constant separation that is clear and identifiable. 
  • If the in-person teaching or instruction involves singing or the playing of brass or wind instruments,
    o every person who is singing or playing must be separated from every other person by plexiglass or some other impermeable barrier, or
    o every person in the instructional space must remain at least 3 metres apart from every other person in the instructional space.

The person responsible for the business shall also:

  • record the name and contact information of every student who attends the in-person teaching and instruction;
  • maintain the records for a period of at least one month,; and 
  • only disclose the records to a medical officer of health or an inspector

Masks and Face Coverings

Persons attending outdoor recreational amenities must abide by the above physical distancing regulations. If a person is not able to maintain physical distancing at an outdoor recreational amenity, the person shall wear a mask or face covering in a manner that covers their mouth, nose and chin unless the person is subject to an exception precluding them from wearing a mask or face covering.

Cleaning Requirements

The person responsible for an outdoor recreational amenity that is open shall ensure that:

  • any washrooms or similar amenities made available to the public are cleaned and disinfected as frequently as is necessary to maintain a sanitary condition as per the provincial guidance document Cleaning and Disinfection for Public Settings; and
  • any equipment that is rented to, provided to or provided for the use of members of the public must be cleaned and disinfected as frequently as is necessary to maintain a sanitary condition.

Under Step 1, capacity limits have been placed for religious services, rites or ceremonies, including wedding and funeral services within places of worship as follows:

  • Indoor religious services, rites and ceremonies, including weddings and funerals at 15% capacity of the room. 
  • Outdoors religious services, rites and ceremonies including weddings and funerals are permitted with capacity limited to permit physical distancing of 2 metres (6 feet).

For more information please refer to COVID-19 Guidance for Places of Worship  (revised June 11, 2021) for further details.

This guidance document (revised May 31, 2021) outlines the protective measures that can be put in place the safe use of public washrooms.

Shelter services are designed to provide persons experiencing homelessness immediate access to a safe and temporary place while they work to find housing.

The following information is intended to help shelter service providers reduce the risk of exposure to illnesses including COVID-19.

Page last updated: June 15, 2021

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