COVID-19 is something that we are all going to have to face together. Our primary concern is the health and safety of Ontarians.
We hope you are staying safe and healthy.
Thank you to all the province’s essential services workers and those on the front-line. You step up everyday to ensure individuals, families and seniors have what they need to stay safe and healthy.
Thank you to everyone else who is staying home and practicing physical distancing.
It is important to listen to the advice of Public Health experts:
- Wash hands frequently
- Avoiding touching eyes, nose and mouth
- Avoid contact with people who are sick
- Practice social-distancing
- Stay home if you’re not feeling well
- If you are concerned or suspect you have the virus, call
Telehealth Ontario: 1-866-797-0000 or
Ottawa Public Health: 613-580-6744
New as of April 25
Community and allotment gardens are allowed to OPEN!
Changes to Emergency orders support seniors, the deafblind community, and vulnerable communities
On the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health, the Ontario government is introducing new and amending some emergency orders under subsection 7.0.2 (4) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act to better support Ontario’s long-term care homes and deafblind community. The orders would allow for the redeployment of staff to ensure they can work where they are needed most during the COVID-19 outbreak.
The government is also amending an emergency order to help ensure food security for some individuals and families during the pandemic.
The new and amended emergency orders being introduced will:
- Allow health service providers, including hospitals, to temporarily reassign frontline staff to provide services and supports in long-term care homes.This will help to quickly provide much-needed staffing support to long-term care homes while they continue to fight outbreaks.
- Provide staffing flexibility to service providers and employers in the intervenor services sector, which helps people who have a combined loss of hearing and vision. This will give employers the temporary authority to redirect staff to carry out essential tasks to support and protect people who are deafblind. It will also ensure staffing measures are in place to allow for physical distancing.
- Permit the use of allotment gardens and community gardens across the province. These gardens are an essential source of fresh food for some individuals and families, including those who face food insecurity. Local medical officers of health will provide advice, recommendation and instructions that the gardens must meet in order to operate, such as physical distancing, and cleaning and disinfecting commonly used equipment and surfaces.
Today, Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, and Jeff Yurek, Minister of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, issued the following statement on Ontario Parks operations in response to COVID-19:
“In order to keep Ontarians safe during this COVID-19 outbreak, our government is extending the closure of Ontario’s provincial parks and conservation reserves to May 31, 2020. This includes car camping, backcountry camping, roofed accommodations, day use opportunities, access points and all public buildings.
Provincial parks and conservation reserves will continue to remain fully closed to all recreational activities.
Reservations for arrivals up to, and including, any further closure extension date will be automatically cancelled and reservation holders will receive a full refund with no penalty. We are also providing penalty-free refunds to reservation holders who wish to change or cancel their 2020 camping reservation, regardless of arrival date.
Please continue to visit OntarioParks.com and Ontario Parks social media channels for the most up-to-date information.
We understand this extension may impact many Ontarians’ plans during the month of May. However, the health and well-being of Ontarians is our government’s number one priority. Although we are making progress to stop the spread, the virus has not yet been contained. As a result, all but essential service workers must continue to stay at home and practice physical distancing.”
In recognition of the dedication, long hours and increased risk of working to contain the COVID-19 outbreak, the Ontario government is providing frontline staff with a temporary pandemic payment.
This increase will provide four dollars per hour worked on top of existing hourly wages, regardless of the qualified employee’s hourly wage. In addition, employees working over 100 hours per month would receive lump sum payments of $250 per month for each of the next four months. This means that eligible employees working an average of 40 hours per week would receive $3,560 in additional compensation. Those eligible to receive the payment will be staff working in long-term care homes, retirement homes, emergency shelters, supportive housing, social services congregate care settings, corrections institutions and youth justice facilities, as well as those providing home and community care and some staff in hospitals.
The announcement was made today by Premier Doug Ford, Peter Bethlenfalvy, President of the Treasury Board, Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, and Dr. Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Long-Term Care.
Staff providing frontline clinical services, along with those providing support services, such as cleaning and meal preparation, will be eligible to receive the pandemic payment. The additional compensation is temporary and would begin flowing immediately and continue for 16 weeks.
These measures build on steps the government has already taken to support frontline workers, including providing free emergency child care and securing necessary medical equipment and supplies. The Ontario government remains committed to using every resource it has to support frontline workers as we work to stop the spread of COVID-19.
The Ontario government remains committed to using every resource it has to support frontline workers as we work to stop the spread of COVID-19.