Premier Extends Lockdown and Stay At Home Order

Brenda Watkins
May 14, 2021

As expected the province is extending the current stay-at-home order.

The stay-at-home order requires everyone to remain at home except for specified purposes, such as going to the grocery store or pharmacy, accessing health care services (including getting vaccinated), for outdoor exercise, or for work that can not be done remotely.

Andrea Horwath, leader of the opposition at Queen's Park, said the extension of the stay-at-home order is the result of Ford ignoring the advice of health experts. Big box stores are strictly limited to selling essential items only.

The decision to keep outdoor sports shuttered contrasts with the opinion of health experts who stress these settings are safe. All public health and workplace safety measures under the provincewide emergency brake will also remain in effect.

Premier Ford made the announcement with short notice this morning and afterwards took questions for the first time in nearly two weeks.

"We don't expect that there will be any, or perhaps just a few doses, that may expire", Health Minister Christine Elliott said.

On Thursday, when asked about the 1,000-a-day target, Williams said that "I'm looking at a number well under 1,000 and we have to stay there".

"My goal is to have the most normal July and August as possible".

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Neighbouring New Brunswick announced that it had two more cases of the blood clots for a total of four.

But as of May 31, youth between the ages of 12 and 17 as well as their family members will be eligible for the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. "We need to do everything in our power to protect this summer for all Ontarians".

"Expanding vaccines to youth 12 and up will bring us one step closer to normalcy for our students", said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education.

"We know that the risk of having COVID being brought into the schools is higher when the rates are higher in the community".

While the Ontario Medical Association says the order should be extended, it does believe some restrictions on outdoor recreational activities, like golf, tennis and basketball, should be lifted to improve people's mental and physical health.

"Unlike in the past, we are in a different reality, we are in a vaccinated reality", he said.

The number of new daily cases of COVID-19 in the province has been gradually dropping, but is still above the level that Dr. David Williams, the province's chief medical officer of health, has suggested is needed before easing public-health restrictions.

The province reported 2,759 new infections in its latest update - well below the more than 4,000 a day it was seeing when it last extended the order and added sweeping restrictions about a month ago. This past week (May 2 to 8), the provincial cases rate decreased by 14.8 per cent, with the positivity rate also decreasing to 7.7 per cent compared to 8.6 per cent the previous week.

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