TORONTO – The Grey-Lockdown status for Toronto has the City issued an update on what is required or recommended by residents.
On Monday, Toronto moved into the Grey – Lockdown category of the Province of Ontario’s COVID-19 response framework in an effort to reduce and eliminate the transmission of COVID-19, protect the healthcare system and save lives.
To help residents understand the new Grey – Lockdown category measures, the City has created a simple “Do” and “Don’t” guide at https://www.toronto.ca/home/covid-19/covid-19-reopening-recovery-rebuild/covid-19-guide-for-toronto-residents/.
This guide clearly communicates what is – and what is not – permitted under the province’s lockdown stage that came into effect on Monday to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
This will be the first weekend with the new protections in place that impact a number of City services and facilities. Current impacts include:
Access to 82 Toronto Public Library branches will continue for contactless pick-up of holds, return of library materials through exterior drop boxes, access to computers by appointment and drop-in, access to Wi-Fi (outside the branch), photocopiers, printers and scanners, and access to washrooms. More information on library services is available at http://www.tpl.ca/covid19. Library branches are open Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and continue to be closed on Sundays.
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 sport courts and fields as well as to the use of other amenities.
Outdoor skating rinks
Most of the City’s 54 outdoor artificial ice rinks are opening starting Saturday November 28. The City’s rinks will be open daily, weather permitting, into March 2021. Due to warm weather conditions this weekend, some outdoor ice rinks may be affected.
This year, to reduce the spread of COVID-19 at City outdoor ice rinks and to ensure compliance with provincial orders, capacity is limited to 25 people per ice pad. People should only skate with members of their own household. Leisure skate times will run in 45-minute sessions and skating is only permitted during supervised hours.
Reservations are encouraged. A small number of spots will be available for participants who are not able to make a reservation online. To make a reservation, people must get a client and family PIN number by calling 416-396-7378, Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. To learn how to reserve online visit https://www.toronto.ca/explore-enjoy/recreation/recreation-reservations/.
The City is strongly recommending that masks or cloth face coverings be worn on and off the ice surface and masks are mandatory while waiting in line. Participants must also maintain a physical distance of six feet (two metres) from people not from their household. Indoor washroom access will be available, however, change rooms are closed and skaters should come ready to skate.
Ice-making and ice maintenance is weather-dependent. Clients will not receive cancellation notices by phone or by email, so it is important to check the rink status online before heading out. More information about free skating at the City’s rinks as well as a list of locations is available at https://www.toronto.ca/skate.
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, only visit one at a time, pass screening and follow all guidelines including use of personal protective equipment. Adult Day Programs at Bendale Acres, Cummer Lodge and Kipling Acres remain suspended.
St. Lawrence Market
The St. Lawrence Market is a public food market that provides fresh and prepared foods to local residents. The Market believes in the importance of local food systems and is committed to providing food access.
The South (main) Market building at 91 to 95 Front Street East remains open Tuesday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 5 a.m. to 4 p.m. Extensive COVID-19 precautions are in place including mandatory masks, enhanced sanitization, entrance and capacity management to ensure that customers can shop for their food at physical distance from others.
Due to Provincial restrictions in the Grey – Lockdown category of the Province’s COVID-19 response framework related to markets the Saturday Farmers Market will not be able to operate inside the Temporary Market at 125 The Esplanade until further notice. The Farmers Market will operate outside on Market Street between The Esplanade and Wilton Street. A limited number of Farmers Market vendors will be in attendance on Saturday, November 28, and the outdoor market area will expand with additional stalls in the coming weeks.
Customers are reminded to keep physical distance and wear their mask in all areas of the St. Lawrence Market Complex including while in line and in the outdoor market area.
For further information of St. Lawrence Market operations during the COVID-19 health emergency please visit http://www.stlawrencemarket.com.
Zoos and Farm
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.
City staff are continuing to look at alternative program delivery models, including virtual options for some of our services.
A reminder that 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.
The City’s website is updated daily with the latest health advice and information about City services, social supports and economic recovery measures. Check http://www.toronto.ca/covid-19/ for answers to common questions before contacting the Toronto Public Health COVID-19 Hotline or 311.