Code Orange: Eastern Ontario Health Unit rejoins Ottawa in ‘Restrict’ level for COVID-19 restrictions

OTTAWA — With new COVID-19 cases rising across the region, new restrictions will be imposed on bars, restaurants, fitness centres, gyms, sports and movie theatres in Eastern Ontario.

The Ontario government announced the Eastern Ontario Health Unit region will move to the “orange-restrict” zone on Monday, after spending three weeks in the “yellow-protect” zone.

Public Health Ontario reported 46 new cases of COVID-19 in the Eastern Ontario Health Unit region on Friday. Forty-three new cases of COVID-19 were announced in the region last Friday, which was the previous one-day record.

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit is at 73 cases per 100,000 people for the period of Dec. 1 to 7.

The City of Ottawa will remain in the “orange-restrict” zone.

In the “orange-restrict” level of Ontario’s colour-coded COVID-19 restriction system, last call for bars and restaurants is at 9 p.m., and establishments must close at 10 p.m. except for takeout and delivery. Capacity restrictions limit the number of people sitting at a table to four people.

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit covers Alexandria, Cornwall, Casselman, Clarence-Rockland, Prescott-Russell and Hawkesbury areas. 

Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington remains in the “yellow-protect” zone, while the Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit also moves into the “yellow-protect” zone.

Here is a look at the restrictions for the “Orange-Restrict” level for Ottawa and Eastern Ontario:

Gathering limits

Gathering limits for select organized public events and social gatherings (e.g., private gatherings at home, in parks, etc., barbeques):

  • 10 people indoors
  • 25 people outdoors

Gathering limit for organized public events and social gatherings:

  • 50 people indoors
  • 100 people outdoors

Gathering limits for religious services, rites or ceremonies, including weddings and funerals:

  • 30 per cent capacity indoors
  • 100 people outdoors

Other requirements: 

  • Requirement for workplace screening
  • Requirement for face coverings at indoor workplaces
  • Requirement for face coverings in indoor public spaces, with limited exemptions
  • Worker protections such as eye protection where patrons without face coverings are within two metres of workers
  • Development and implementation of a communication/public education plan (highlighting risk)
  • Advice to restrict non-essential travel from areas of high-transmission to areas of low transmission

Restaurants, bars, and food & drink establishments

  • 50 person indoor capacity limit
  • Limit operating hours, establishments close at 10 p.m.
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor between 10 p.m. and 9 a.m.
  • Require screening of patrons 
  • Limit of 4 people may be seated together
  • Closure of strip clubs
  • Require contact information for all seated patrons
  • Limit volume of music (e.g., to be no louder than the volume of a normal conversation)
  • Safety plan available upon request
  • Require patrons to be seated; 2 metres minimum between tables
  • Dancing, singing and performing music is permitted, with restrictions
  • Karaoke permitted, with restrictions (including no private rooms)
  • No buffet style service
  • Night clubs only permitted to operate as restaurant or bar
  • Line-ups/patrons congregating outside venues managed by venue; 2 metres distance and face covering required
  • Face coverings except when eating or drinking only
  • Eye protection where patrons without face coverings are within two metres of workers

Sports and gyms

  • Maximum 50 people per facility in all combined recreational fitness spaces or programs (not pools, rinks at arenas, community centres, and multipurpose facilities)
  • Require screening of patrons, including spectators
  • Limit duration of stay (e.g. 60minutes); exemption for sports
  • No spectators permitted (exemption for parent/guardian supervision of children)
  • Face coverings required except when exercising
  • Increase spacing between patrons to 3 metres for areas of a sport or recreational facility where there are weights/weight machines and exercise/fitness classes
  • Recreational programs limited to 10 people per room indoors and 25 outdoors
  • Require contact information for all patrons and attendance for team sports
  • Require appointments for entry; one reservation for teams
  • Safety plan available upon request
  • Team or individual sports must be modified to avoid physical contact; 50 people per league
  • Exemption for high performance athletes and parasports
  • Limit volume of music (e.g., conversation level)/require use of microphone for instructor where needed to avoid shouting

Retail

  • Require screening of patrons at mall entrances
  • Limit volume of music (e.g., to be no louder than the volume of a normal conversation)
  • For malls – safety plan available upon request
  • Fitting rooms must be limited to nonadjacent stalls
  • Line-ups/patrons congregating outside venues managed by venue; 2 metres distance and face covering required

Personal Care Services

  • Services requiring removal of face coverings prohibited
  • Change rooms & showers closed
  • Bath houses, other adult venues, hot tubs, floating pools and sensory deprivation pods closed (some exceptions)
  • Require screening of patrons
  • Require contact information from all patrons
  • Safety plan available upon request
  • Oxygen bars, steam rooms, saunas, and whirlpools closed 

Casinos, Bingo Halls and Gaming Establishments 

  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor between 10 p.m. and 9 a.m.
  • Require screening of patrons 
  • Require contact information from all patrons
  • Safety plan available upon request
  • Capacity cannot exceed 50 persons.
  • Table games are prohibited.
  • OR casinos, bingo halls, and gaming establishments operate in accordance with a plan approved by the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health

Cinemas

  • 50 per facility (revoke OCMOH approved plan)
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor between 10 p.m. and 9 a.m.
  • Require screening of patrons
  • Require contact information from all patrons
  • Safety plan available upon request
  • Face coverings except when eating or drinking only
  • Drive-in cinemas permitted to operate, subject to restrictions 

Meeting and Event Spaces

  • Maximum of 50 people per facility
  • Limit operating hours, establishments close at 10 p.m.
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor between 10 p.m. and 9 a.m.
  • Limit of 4 people may be seated together
  • Require screening of patrons 
  • Require contact information for all seated patrons
  • Limit volume of music (e.g., to be no louder than the volume of a normal conversation)
  • Safety plan available upon request
  • Booking multiple rooms for the same event not permitted

Performing Arts Facilities

  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor between 10 p.m. and 9 a.m.
  • Require screening of patrons
  • Require contact information from all patrons
  • Safety plan available upon request
  • 50 spectators indoors and 100 spectators outdoors with 2 metres physical distance maintained
  • Singers and players of wind or brass instruments must be separated from spectators by plexiglass or some other impermeable barrier
  • Rehearsal or performing a recorded or broadcasted event permitted
  • Performers and employees must maintain 2 metres physical distance except for purposes of the performance
  • Drive-in performances permitted  

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