March 18, 2022 – COVID-19 Update – Thunder Bay, Ontario, International

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COVID-19 Update

THUNDER BAY – COVID-19 Update – The Thunder Bay District Health Unit reports 79 new lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the District.

There are now 166 lab-confirmed active cases in the district.

Hospital numbers are continuing to fall. There are 29 patients in hospital in the district, and six are in Intensive Care Wards.

The TBDHU reports the immunization clinic at the CLE Coliseum will NOT be open on Mondays.

Tuesdays-Fridays the clinic will maintain same schedule:

Tues & Thurs – 11:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Wed & Fri – 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

City of Thunder Bay on Masking Mandates Update

Starting March 21, the Government of Ontario will drop the mandatory mask mandate in the majority of public settings, including city facilities. Mandates will still remain in place for a period of time for public transit, long-term care and health care settings.

Regulations have also been dissolved around gathering restrictions and the vaccination passport. In addition, formal screening measures will no longer be required as of March 21, with the exceptions of Long-Term Care.

Most city service counters will also reopen on March 21, including:

  • In City Hall: Office of the City Clerk, Provincial Land Tax service counter, lobby, and main floor washrooms
  • In the Victoriaville Civic Centre: all service counters will fully reopen with the exception of Cashiers, Supply Management, and Community Services
  • By appointment only: Community Services, PRO Kids, Financial Services, Human Resources, Revenue (Tax and Water Billing), Supply Management, and Municipal Enforcement Services

Pioneer Ridge Long Term Care

Although COVID-19 restrictions and mandates are being lifted, Pioneer Ridge is taking a gradual and cautious approach as the safety of residents remains a priority. During the reopening phase, all policies that are currently in place will be constantly reviewed to ensure a safe and secure environment for all those living in the Home, including:

  • Infection prevention & control, vaccination, and visitation
  • Screening and daily rapid antigen testing
  • Mandatory vaccination requiring three doses for staff, volunteers, students and essential caregivers and two doses for general visitors

Toronto on Masking Mandate

Toronto following provincial guidance to remove most face mask requirements as of March 21

The City of Toronto will continue to follow provincial guidance on face masks and will lift masking requirement for visitors in most City facilities when most provincial masking regulations are lifted on Monday, March 21.

Following Province of Ontario guidance, starting next week masks will no longer be required in settings such as retail stores, bars, restaurants, gyms, community centres or museums. Masks will continue to be mandatory in high-risk and congregate settings including on public transit, in long-term care and retirement homes, health-care settings and shelters.

The City supports the choice by visitors to City facilities where masks are not required to remain masked, should they prefer.

Following the Province’s removal of mandatory masking requirements in most settings, the following City services and facilities will be impacted starting next week:

City buildings and civic centres
Masks will no longer be required when visiting City buildings and civic centres. This includes St. Lawrence Market, Toronto History Museums, Waste Drop-Off Depots, City Hall, Metro Hall, North York Civic Centre, Scarborough Civic Centre, Etobicoke Civic Centre, York Civic Centre and East York Civic Centre. Masks are not required in City Council and Committee meetings. Masks will be optional at all Toronto Public Library branches.

Community centres and recreational programs
Based on the provincial changes, masks will no longer be required when visiting a community centre or when participating in a City recreational program or activity. This applies to all City community recreation centres and after-school recreation care programs.

Public transit and Union Station
Following provincial regulation, masks will continue to be required on public transit including in stations and vehicles on the TTC, GO, UP Express and VIA Rail (under federal regulations). Starting next week, masks will not be required inside the non-transit related areas in Union Station, however, other public health and safety practices will continue to be encouraged.

Long-term care homes
As per provincial regulation, mask requirements will continue in all of the City’s directly-operated long-term care homes. Up-to-date information about City’s long-term care homes including visiting requirements is available online: www.toronto.ca/community-people/housing-shelter/rental-housing-tenant-information/finding-housing/long-term-care-homes/.

Shelter, Support and Housing Administration (SSHA)
Following provincial regulation, masks will continue to be required in shelters. The current Toronto Shelter Standards directive on mask and personal protective equipment use for shelters is available on the City’s website: www.toronto.ca/community-people/community-partners/emergency-shelter-operators/bulletins-directives-funding-submissions-and-shelter-standards/.

City of Toronto Children’s Services
The City’s Children’s Services division is continuing to work with Toronto Public Health and Occupational Health and Safety to determine any updates to policies that would ensure the health and safety of staff and children in care in City-operated child care centres while following provincial direction. Any change to policy will be communicated to families and staff in advance. Until this time, masks will continue to be worn by child care staff when interacting with children, their families and other staff.

Mask policy for City staff
Following provincial direction, from March 21 through April 26 masks will continue to be required while delivering essential critical care services in highest-risk settings, including for Paramedics and Fire Services and in long-term care homes and shelters. In all other circumstances, employees are not required to wear a mask but may choose to wear a mask in any settings they wish and will be supported in doing so.

Public consultations
The City has effectively engaged the public through virtual methods throughout the pandemic. Scheduled public consultations will remain virtual with new consultations taking a virtual, hybrid or in-person approach that will be most effective in reaching the target audience in an equitable way.

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