Self-Isolation Compliance and Enforcement of The Quarantine Act

Written by Communications, March 31, 2020

Peterborough Public Health continues to seek clarification from the federal government regarding the role of local police forces and public health agencies in the enforcement of the Quarantine Act.

The Quarantine Act gives authority to a Quarantine Officer who identifies returning travelers at the port of entry who are either allowed to self-isolate at home or sequestered in a federally-designated quarantine facility. Quarantine Officers are required to share the list of travelers returning home to self-isolate with the local public health agency. It is not clear which local enforcement authority is responsible for supporting compliance, if required, with these quarantined individuals. This Emergency Order applies only to returning travelers as of Wednesday, March 25.

Travelers who returned to Canada before March 25 will not be covered by the Emergency Order. However, they are expected to comply with federal and provincial requirements to self-isolate for 14 days. To encourage compliance, Peterborough Public Health is educating local residents through the media and social media. A fact sheet for returning travelers is available on Concerned callers will be provided with information and guidance.

There is no mechanism currently in place to identify those people who have been directed to self-isolate because of a travel history. Peterborough Public Health is relying on education and information to promote compliance. The COVID-19 virus is circulating in our communities and everyone should be practicing physical distancing, staying at home, and only leaving their home for reasons deemed essential under the provincial emergency orders.

As more details become known about enforcement of federal and provincial orders, these will be shared. Peterborough Public Health has developed a new webpage on Reporting Complaints that can be found on

For more information about COVID-19, please visit Peterborough Public Health at                                                                                                                       If you think you may have COVID-19 symptoms or have been in close contact with someone who has it, first self-isolate and then use Ontario’s Self-Assessment Tool to see if you need to seek further care.  If you need further assistance, call TeleHealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000 or your health care provider. You can also call Peterborough Public Health at 705-743-1000.

Visit Ontario’s website to learn more about how the province continues to protect Ontarians from COVID-19.


For further information, please contact:

Brittany Cadence
Communications Manager
705-743-1000, ext. 391