Statement from Warden Bob Crate on provincial shutdown — RELEASE

Ruben Fields
April 3, 2021

According to the Ontario government's guidelines for shutdown, in-person dining will be shuttered yet again and further gathering restrictions will go into effect across Ontario; personal care services and gyms will be closed.

Capacity limits of 50 per cent for stores that primarily sell food (including farmers markets) and pharmacies.

Some outdoor activities will be allowed such as golf, but team sports will not be permitted.

"We're ready to ramp up to 1,500 once we have more vaccines", Ford says, noting millions of additional vaccines are "on the horizon".

From lockdown to shutdown to circuit breaker to emergency brake, jurisdictions across the country have been using different buzzwords to describe periods of tightened COVID-19 restrictions.

"This is a new pandemic. We're fighting a new enemy", Ford said.

Indoor gatherings are only allowed with members of the same household while outdoor gatherings are limited to five people and physical distancing must be maintained.

This excludes gatherings with members of the same household or gatherings of members of one household and one other person from another household who lives alone.

Weddings, funerals and other religious services will be capped at 15 per cent of regular indoor capacity.

On Thursday, the region saw 84 new cases.

"This is a top priority", he says.

On Thursday, Premier Doug Ford announced the entire province will be under shutdown for at least four weeks starting Saturday, April 3 at 12:01 a.m.

Health Minister Christine Elliott told the news conference that prior experience showed stay-at-home orders were hard to enforce, especially with better weather on the way. "Implementing a province-wide emergency brake was not an easy decision to make and is not one we take lightly".

Ontario to go into month-long COVID-19 shut-down starting April 3

"The current measures and framework are not working to contain the spread of this virus", reads the letter in part.

The letter says doctors are seeing younger patients on ventilators, many of whom are parents of school-aged children. The HKPR District Health Unit is emphasizing the importance of continuing with the preventive measures known to reduce spread in order to keep our community safe until widespread vaccination has the opportunity to take hold.

For more than a week in Ontario, the daily case numbers have been more than 2,000.

Advisers said new pandemic modelling indicates the third wave is being driven by more deadly variants. "The risk of death is 1.5 times higher".

Several sources have learned Ontario is expected to announce a 28-day provincewide "shutdown" today amid an alarming spike in cases, in variants, and in admissions to hospital intensive care units.

Outdoor fitness classes also briefly resumed in regions under the grey zone.

By applying this "emergency brake", we will bridge the gap until the mass amounts of vaccine anticipated for delivery arrive in Ontario in the next few weeks.

However, the CBC's Mike Crawley reports the province has also created a new category of restrictions on its website called "shutdown".

Keeping schools open is critical to the mental health and well-being of Ontario youth. "And we're not as forgiving as we might have been a year ago when the feeling was 'we're all in this together'".

"While some good employers out there are already doing this, most are not and won't unless [the] government forces them to just do the right thing", said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President on Thursday.

Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy.

The seven-day average is up to 2,341 cases daily and 113 weekly per 100,000.

US Capitol lockdown lifted after one officer, suspect killed in vehicle attack
Video posted online showed a dark colored sedan crashed against a vehicle barrier and a police K-9 dog inspecting the vehicle. Capitol Police say that someone "rammed a vehicle into two USCP officers" and that a suspect was taken into custody.

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