Ontario issues stay-at-home order, immediately declares second state of emergency

The Ontario government has issued a stay-at-home order for the province beginning on Jan. 14 and has declared a second state of emergency for the province.

Ford announced on Tuesday at Queen's Park that the new order will require everyone to remain at home, with the exception for essential purposes, such as going to the grocery store, pharmacy, accessing health-care services, for exercise or for essential work.

Under the declaration of a provincial emergency, the government is providing all enforcement and provincial offence officers, including the Ontario Provincial Police, local police forces, bylaw officers, and provincial workplace inspectors to issue tickets to those who do not comply with the stay-at-home order.

"Those who decide not to abide by orders will be subject to set fines and/or prosecution under both the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, (ROA) and EMCPA," the government said in a release on Tuesday.

Schools in Toronto, York Region, Hamilton, Peel Region and Windsor-Essex will not return to in-person learning until Feb. 10.

Other new measures include:

  •  Outdoor organized public gatherings and social gatherings are further restricted to a limit of five people with limited exceptions
  •  All non-essential retail stores, including hardware stores, alcohol retailers, and those offering curbside pickup or delivery, must open no earlier than 7 a.m. and close no later than 8 p.m. The restricted hours of operation do not apply to stores that primarily sell food, pharmacies, gas stations, convenience stores, and restaurants for takeout or delivery.
  •  Non-essential construction is further restricted, including below-grade construction, exempting survey. 

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