Toronto Adopts New Protocols for Lockdown

COVID-19 Toronto

TORONTO – COVID-19 Update – As the City of Toronto moves into the lockdown, municipal services are being amended.

Toronto has updated facility and service information with changes to come into effect tomorrow, Monday, November 23, when the city moves into the Grey – Lockdown category of the Province of Ontario’s COVID-19 response framework. The City supports all efforts to reduce and eliminate the transmission of COVID-19 and is acting to protect the healthcare system and save lives.

The new protections announced on Friday impact a number of City services and facilities. Many divisions are looking at alternative program delivery models, including virtual options, which will be added to toronto.ca as details become available; residents are encouraged to check back often. Current impacts include:

Child Care
City-operated child care centres (Toronto Early Learning & Child Care Services) remain operational in adherence with Toronto Public Health guidance for child care settings.

Courts
Provincial Offence Act proceedings have resumed remotely. Court services remain available to the public, including access to court forms, making a payment, looking up court case status and requesting an early resolution meeting. Services are available online, via email, phone and mail and in-person service by appointment only. Toronto Local Appeal Body, Administrative Penalty Tribunal and Toronto Licensing Tribunal hearings will be conducted remotely by audio or video conference.

Ward 22 Scarborough-Agincourt By-Election
Nominations for the January 15, 2021 Ward 22 by-election continue to be accepted at the 89 Northline Rd. Toronto Elections Office only until Tuesday, December 1 at 2 p.m. Information about the nomination process is available online: http://www.toronto.ca/byelection.

Libraries
Access to 82 Toronto Public Library branches will continue for contactless pick-up of holds, drop boxes, access to computers by appointment and drop-in, access to Wi-Fi, photocopiers, printers and fax machines and access to washrooms. All branches will be closed Monday, November 23 and Tuesday, November 24 to allow staff to reconfigure library spaces to further promote physical distancing and comply with regulations. More information on library services is available at http://tpl.ca/covid19.

Parks
Parks and playgrounds remain open. People are strongly encouraged to get fresh air and exercise with members of their own household only. Parks, Forestry and Recreation staff are reaching out to impacted permit holders whose permits have been cancelled. Compliance will continue to be required with the City’s physical distancing bylaw which applies to parks and squares.

Recreation and Community Centres
All indoor recreation facilities, including arenas, gymnasiums, walking tracks, indoor sport courts, pools and arenas are closed due to the provincial order. Community centres and multi-purpose facilities are open for limited activities, including child care, After-school Recreation Care (ARC) programs, food bank services and public access to washrooms. Parks, Forestry and Recreation staff are reaching out to impacted program participants, permit and lease holders to advise of impacts and cancellations. General gathering limits of 10 people apply to outdoor sports, classes and use of amenities.

Museums
All museums are closed.

City’s Senior Services and Long-Term Care Homes
Visiting remains restricted to essential visitors (end of life) and essential caregivers only. All essential caregivers, to a maximum of two per resident, must be registered with the long-term care home and comply with screening and personal protective equipment requirements. Adult Day Programs at Bendale Acres, Cummer Lodge and Kipling Acres remain suspended.

St. Lawrence Market
The St. Lawrence Market will remain open.

Zoos
High Park Zoo, Riverdale Farm and the Toronto Zoo are closed to visitors due to the provincial order. The Toronto Zoo is exploring options for a safe drive-through experience.

Marriage Licences
The City continues to issue marriage licences by appointment only; however, couples should review their wedding plans considering reduced attendance limits and closures of event spaces. Marriage licences are only good for 90 days from date of issue and are non-refundable. Only those who need to marry urgently or have firm plans for an upcoming date should be seeking a licence at this time.

Home and Social Visits
Having anyone – including family or friends – that is not a member of your household in your home for a social visit is discouraged by public health officials. Essential support workers and emergency repairpersons are permitted. Individuals who live alone may have exclusive contact with only one other household to help reduce the negative impacts of social isolation. Non-essential travel outside of one’s own community is strongly discouraged.

Residents of Toronto are asked to stay home, except for essential trips, such as groceries and other necessities, like medicine, healthcare appointments, exercise, school, child care and work that cannot be done from home. By reducing the number of people who are out in the community, we reduce the number of potential contacts and exposures to COVID-19, which will drive down case counts. When leaving for essential trips, residents must wear a mask when outside of their homes, especially in indoor settings and when physical distancing is difficult. Residents should wash hands frequently and remain at home when ill.