Provincial Shutdown Takes Effect Today

Written by Communications, December 26, 2020

Restrictions in Effect Until January 23, 2021 or Longer if Needed to Reduce Spread of COVID-19

Peterborough Public Health is advising residents that the provincial shutdown measures intended to curb the spread of COVID-19 are now in effect.

“This shutdown is necessary, as the dire projections of lives that will be lost and the strain on our health care system and workers are calling on all of us to act now,” said Dr. Rosana Salvaterra, Medical Officer of Health. “Despite our best efforts, Peterborough is not an island – our increasing weekly incidence rate and increasing test positivity rate attest to that.”

Dr. Salvaterra commended the local community for their hard work so far fighting COVID-19. “There’s no doubt in my mind that most of us have taken the public health guidance and provincial restrictions to heart. We continue to experience rates of infection that are well below the provincial average,” she said. She noted that while overall local compliance has been good, she supports the shutdown as Ontario’s regional approach has unfortunately not been able to prevent the second wave of COVID-19 from surging across the province.

Peterborough Public Health will be reducing services in its Community Dental Health Clinic to emergency and urgent care needs only in order to redeploy staff to assist with the COVID-19 response.

Restrictions taking effect today will remain in place for Southern Ontario, including the Peterborough area, until Saturday, January 23, 2021 or longer if needed. Key public health measures include:

 

  • Stay home and restrict any travel outside the home for essential purposes only.
  • No indoor organized public events and social gatherings, except with household members only. Those who live alone and single parents may consider having exclusive, close contact with another household to help reduce the negative impacts of social isolation. Outdoor gatherings are limited to 10 people.
  • Elementary school students will learn online from January 4 to 8, and return to in-person learning on January 11, 2021.
  • Secondary school students will continue learning remotely until January 25, 2021 and resume in-person learning on that date.
  • Post-secondary institutions will remain open for virtual instruction only with limited exceptions.
  • Child care will remain openfor the duration of the province-wide shutdown period. The Ministry of Education is offering emergency child care for school-aged children to support parents who are healthcare workers or provide essential services.
  • Only essential businesses and services can remain open, and must implement a public health Safety Plan to prevent the spread of COVID-19. For sector-specific guidance, business operators can call the Stop the Spread Business information line at 1-888-444-3659, or leave a message with Peterborough Public Health and staff will get back to you within 2-3 business days.
  • There will be no in-person shopping in most retail settings – curbside pickup and delivery can continue.
  • Discount and big box retailers that sell groceries will be limited to 25 per cent capacity for in-store shopping.
  • Supermarkets, grocery stores and similar stores that primarily sell food, as well as pharmacies, will continue to operate at 50 per cent capacity for in-store shopping. Shopping malls may also establish outdoor designated pickup areas.
  • Indoor and outdoor dining is prohibited. Restaurants, bars and other food or drink establishments will be permitted to operate by take out, drive-through, and delivery only.
  • Personal Service Settings will be closed.
  • Fitness centres and sport and recreation centres will be closed.

 

Further information about the provincial shutdown can be found at https://www.ontario.ca/page/covid-19-provincewide-shutdown or by visiting www.peterboroughpublichealth.ca.

 

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For further information, please contact:

Brittany Cadence

Communications Manager

705-743-1000, ext. 391