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Ontario announces Toronto, Peel to enter lockdown on Nov. 23


The government of Ontario has announced it is moving the Toronto and Peel regions into lockdown on Nov. 23 to limit community transmission of COVID-19.

Manufacturing companies and their supply chains are considered essential and will be allowed to remain open.

“With the numbers rising rapidly in certain regions, we have to make the tough, but necessary decisions now to protect our hospitals, long-term care and retirement homes, and every person in this province,” says Premier Doug Ford in a statement.

“We cannot afford a province-wide lockdown, so we are taking preventative action today by moving Toronto and Peel into lockdown-level restrictions and other regions into higher levels of restrictions.”

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Over the past week, some regions under the red (control) level have continued to see worsening trends in key indicators, despite having a range of public health measures and restrictions in place since early October.

Based on the latest data, the government intends to move Peel Public Health and Toronto Public Health into lockdown effective Nov. 23 at 12:01 a.m.

The following public health unit regions will move from their current level in the framework to the following levels effective Monday, November 23, 2020 at 12:01 a.m.:

Red (Control)
Durham Region Health Department and Region of Waterloo Public Health and Emergency Services.

Orange (Restrict)
Huron Perth Public Health, Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit, Southwestern Public Health, and Windsor-Essex County Health Unit.

Yellow (Protect)
Chatham-Kent Public Health, Eastern Ontario Health Unit, Grey Bruce Health Unit, Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox & Addington Public Health, Peterborough Public Health, and Thunder Bay District Health Unit.

Trends in public health data will continue to be reviewed weekly to determine if public health units should stay where they are or be moved into a higher level. Public health units will stay in their level for a minimum of 28 days, or two COVID-19 incubation periods, at which time, the government will assess the impact of public health measures to determine if the public health unit should stay where they are or be moved to a different level.

For a full list of lockdown measures, click here.

$600 million in relief available for businesses

The Ontario government also announced $600 million in relief to support eligible businesses required to close or significantly restrict services due to enhanced public health measures, doubling the commitment of $300 million made in its fall budget.

Businesses can apply online for temporary property tax and energy cost rebate grants from the province, via an easy-to-use one-window portal.

The rebates will cover the length of time that a business is required to temporarily close or significantly restrict services as a result of being located in an area categorized as red (control) or lockdown, or previously categorized as modified Stage 2 public health restrictions.

Most businesses can expect to receive their rebate payments within a few weeks of submitting a complete application. A detailed list of eligible businesses, as well as instructions for applying, can be found at Ontario.ca/covidsupport.