TORONTO—Ontario will move most regions excluding Toronto into the third stage of reopening from July 17, Premier Doug Ford said on Monday, as Canada’s most populous province lifts lockdowns put in place in March to limit the spread of the new coronavirus.
Businesses and public spaces will be allowed to reopen gradually in stage three, according to documents released on Monday. This phase will also allow gatherings of 50 people indoors and 100 people outdoors, but in all cases individuals have to maintain social distancing of at least 2 metres (6.56 feet). The previous limit on indoor and outdoor gatherings was 10 people.
Ten out of 34 regions—including Toronto, Canada’s largest city and its financial capital, and Windsor-Essex, a region that has seen outbreaks of COVID-19 among agricultural workers—will remain in stage two for further assessment.
“We’re moving forward as a province but we can’t stop. We won’t stop until we get every person in Ontario, until we get every worker in Ontario back to work and back on their feet,” Ford told reporters on Monday.
Gyms, movie theatres, and playgrounds will be able open in stage three, as long as they can ensure 2 meters of distance between people and not exceed gathering limits.
Amusement and water parks, dancing in restaurants and bars and overnight children’s camps will remain closed, the framework said.
By Moira Warburton