Ontario Announces Regional COVID-19 Reopening Plan and Extends Stay-At-Home Order
Today, Premier Doug Ford announced that the Government of Ontario is moving to a regional approach and maintaining the shutdown in the majority of the public health regions in Ontario, including the Stay-at-Home order and all existing public health and workplace safety measures.
When it is safe to do so, the province will gradually transition each region from the shutdown measures to a revised COVID-19 Response Framework.
Employers in all industries should continue to make every effort to allow employees to work from home.
The shutdown and stay-at-home order will stay in effect in the Hamilton Region until Tuesday, February 16.
Final decisions will be subject to review of the trends in public health indicators at that time.
We will keep you updated.
Safe Approach to Retail
To support the province’s economic recovery, the government has updated the Framework to allow for a safe approach to retail. Limited in-person shopping in Grey-Lockdown zones will be permitted with significant public health and safety requirements, such as limiting capacity to 25 per cent. In addition, public health and safety measures in retail settings will be strengthened for other levels of the framework. Individuals will also be required to wear a face covering and maintain physical distance when indoors in a business, with limited exceptions.
Please visit https://covid-19.ontario.ca/zones-and-restrictions for the full list of public health region classifications.
The Ontario Small Business Support Grant – now available
The Ontario Small Business Support Grant will provide a minimum of $10,000 and up to $20,000 to help eligible small business owners who have had to restrict their operations due to the Provincewide shutdown.
Small businesses required to close or significantly restrict services will be able to apply for this one-time grant. Each eligible small business will be able to use the support in whatever way makes the most sense for their individual business. For example, some businesses could use the support to pay employee wages, while others may need support maintaining their inventory.
Eligible small businesses include those that:
- Are required to close or significantly restrict services due to the Provincewide Shutdown, which began at 12:01 a.m. on December 26;
- Have fewer than 100 employees at the enterprise level; and
Have experienced a minimum of 20 per cent revenue decline in April 2020 compared to April 2019. New businesses established since April 2019 will also be eligible if they meet the other eligibility criteria.
Visit Ontario.ca/COVIDsupport for more information on applying.