Coronavirus: Latest developments in the Greater Toronto Area on Jan. 15

Here are the latest developments on the coronavirus pandemic in the Greater Toronto Area for Friday.

Vaughan closes several outdoor amenities amid new COVID-19 provincial restrictions

The City of Vaughan says it has shut down outdoor skating rinks, toboggan hills and dog parks “effective immediately” in attempt to curb the spread of coronavirus.

The City said the decision was made “as part of [a] disciplined, responsible and measured approach to COVID-19,” in a press release Friday.

Read more: Vaughan closes several outdoor amenities amid new COVID-19 provincial restrictions

Status of cases in the GTA

Ontario reported a total of 2,998 new cases on Friday.

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Of those:

  • 800 were in Toronto
  • 618 were in Peel Region
  • 250 were in York Region
  • 113 were in Durham Region
  • 81 were in Halton Region

Ontario reports 100 new coronavirus deaths, some unaccounted for during data cleanup

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Ontario is reporting 2,998 new cases of the coronavirus on Friday, bringing the provincial total to 231,308.

The death toll in the province has risen to 5,289, after 100 more deaths were reported — marking the highest number of daily deaths.

However, the province said: “Due to a data cleaning initiative, 46 deaths reported by Middlesex-London Health Unit that occurred earlier in the pandemic are included in today’s report.”

The government said a single-day record number of 76,472 tests were processed in the last 24 hours. Resolved cases increased by 3,380 from the previous day.

Read more: Ontario reports 100 new coronavirus deaths, some unaccounted for during data cleanup

Ontario long-term care homes

According to the Ministry of Long-Term Care, there have been 3,085 deaths reported among residents and patients in long-term care homes across Ontario which is an increase of 22 deaths. Ten virus-related deaths in total have been reported among staff.

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There are 243 current outbreaks in homes, a decrease of one from the previous day.

The ministry also indicated there are currently 1,650 active cases among long-term care residents and 1,336 active cases among staff — up by 47 cases and up by 39 cases, respectively, in the last day.

Ontario MPP kicked out of Ford’s caucus after letter claims ‘lockdowns are deadlier than COVID’

The Ontario government has kicked out one of its own members after an MPP wrote a letter to Doug Ford calling for the end to the lockdown measures implemented due to a surge in coronavirus cases, deaths and hospitalizations.

“The lockdowns are deadlier than COVID,” wrote Roman Baber, MPP for Toronto’s York-Centre riding, as the title of his letter to the premier posted on social media Friday morning. Baber had been elected as a Progressive Conservative MPP in the 2018 provincial election.

“Effective immediately, Mr. Baber will no longer be sitting as a member of the PC Caucus and will not be permitted to seek re-election as a PC member,” said Ford in a statement, in response to Baber’s letter.

Read more: Ontario MPP kicked out of Ford’s caucus after letter claims ‘lockdowns are deadlier than COVID’

NOTE: This story will be updated throughout the day.

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