Torontonians didn't receive the news they were hoping for this afternoon, as the city wasn't approved to enter Stage 2 of reopening the economy.

During his daily COVID briefing, Premier Doug Ford said the Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health and local medical officers of health, is enabling more regions of the province to enter Stage 2 of the government's reopening framework. Unfortunately, this doesn't include Toronto.

Ford said these regions are able to reopen due to positive trends of key public health indicators at the local level, including the lower transmission of COVID-19, sufficient hospital health system capacity, local public health capacity to assist with rapid case and contact management, and a significant increase in testing provincially.

READ: Every Business That’s Allowed to Reopen in Ontario During Stage 2

As of Friday, June 19, 2020, at 12:01 am, the following regions are allowed to enter Stage 2:

  • Durham Region Health Department;
  • Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit;
  • Halton Region Health Department;
  • Hamilton Public Health Services;
  • Lambton Health Unit;
  • Niagara Region Public Health Department; and
  • York Region Public Health Services.
  • These regions are in addition to the 24 public health regions that entered Stage 2 on June 12. Before opening, business owners need to review the workplace safety guidelines and public health advice.

    "Thanks to the collective efforts of our frontline health care workers and the people in these regions to stop the spread of COVID-19, more businesses will be able to open their doors and thousands of people will be able to go back to work and put food on the table," said Premier Ford.

    "With the public health trends improving day by day across the province, I am hopeful all regions of Ontario will enter Stage 2 very soon. But we must remain on our guard to prevent any potential surge or secondary wave by continuing to follow the sound advice of our public health officials."

    At this time, Peel Public Health, Toronto Public Health, and Windsor-Essex County Health Unit will remain in Stage 1 and under ongoing assessment until trends of key public health indicators demonstrate readiness to move into the next stage.

    Moving forward, the provincial government asks all Ontarians to continue to follow public health advice, including practising physical distancing, wearing a face-covering if physical distancing is a challenge, washing hands frequently and thoroughly, and avoiding touching their eyes, nose and mouth.

    If you think you have COVID-19 or have been in contact with someone who has COVID‑19, get tested.

    Ontario News