Ontario extends stay-at-home order, restricts interprovincial travel as province loses battle against COVID-19

TORONTO — Ontario is restricting interprovincial travel, extending the state of emergency and stay-at-home order by two weeks, and placing new restrictions on recreational activities as COVID-19 cases soar.

Premier Doug Ford made the announcement on Friday, saying that “there are few options left” for the province as infection and hospitalization rates continue to hit record highs.

Ontario’s state of emergency and stay-at-home order will now be in effect until at least May 20.

Solicitor General Sylvia Jones also said that police will now have the authority to stop a vehicle or person to inquire about an individual’s reason for leaving their residence.

“Police will have the authority to require any individual who is not in a place of residence to first provide their purpose for not being at home and provide their address,” Jones said.

As of Saturday, big box stores will only be able to operate at 25 per cent capacity, while all non-essential construction projects must stop work.

All outdoor recreation amenities, such as golf courses and playgrounds, will be forced to close as of Saturday.

Outdoor gatherings with people outside of a person’s own household are also prohibited. For people living alone, they can gather with one other household.

Starting Monday, Ontario will set up checkpoints at interprovincial borders to restrict land travel between Quebec and Manitoba to essential travel only.

Travellers who are coming into Ontario for purposes other than work, medical care, transportation of goods and exercising Indigenous treaty rights will be turned back at the border.

Beginning on Monday, places of worship will be capped at a maximum of 10 people indoors. 

This is a developing news story. More information come. 

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