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Fines handed out for gatherings over 10 people at two private residences – CTV News

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KITCHENER —
Two more charges have been laid after people at two private residences reportedly did not follow the government’s emergency orders.

Region of Waterloo CAO Mike Murray reported the charges on Tuesday during one of the region’s twice-weekly media briefing.

The charges were laid between June 23 and June 29 at a private residence in Waterloo and another in Kitchener.

In both cases, Murray says that more than 10 people were gathered.

“The emergency orders are still in effect, they are still being enforced, and the emergency orders do limit public gatherings to less than 10 people,” he reminded the public during the briefing.

“I just encourage everybody to take the emergency orders seriously and take their personal precautions seriously.”

Over the weekend, the Ontario government extended its emergency orders until July 15.

Murray said during the briefing that the rules will continue to be enforced on Canada Day, when many people will be off work and may want to celebrate.

When asked whether these gatherings had anything to do with the situation where London party-goers had come to Waterloo Region, Murray said that the incidents were unrelated.

During the same time period when these charges were laid, enforcement officials had 142 site visits where they educated people about the emergency orders.

They also had 154 site visits where no action was required.

With these charges, the total now sits at 23 given out since the pandemic began.

Murray has said previously that in most cases, the fine would be given to the person facilitating the breaking of the emergency order, meaning the tenant or homeowner.

To date, there have been 1,299 confirmed cases in Waterloo Region. Of those, 1,094 have been resolved, while 116 people have died.

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Health unit instructing commercial businesses to ramp up face covering – Sudbury.com

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As of Wednesday, July 8, all commercial establishments in Sudbury and districts will be required to ramp up their efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

As part of COVID-19 prevention efforts, Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, Medical Officer of Health for Public Health Sudbury & Districts, is issuing instructions to owners and operators of commercial establishments, as well as public transit, to have policies in place to stop people from entering if they are not wearing a face covering. 

The instructions are being issued under the authority of the provincial Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act.

“The face covering requirement for commercial premises that are open to the public is in addition to the diligent work many are already doing to ensure physical distancing and hand sanitizers. Face coverings are extra protection to prevent COVID-19 spread, they also send a message that the wearer wants to protect others,” said Sutcliffe. 

“As we successfully re-open across the province, we also increase the risk of spreading the virus. Establishing common expectations about routine face covering helps reduce this risk now and will pave the way to successful Stage 3 re-opening. It will also help protect us against a potential second wave in the fall and keep businesses and services up and running,” said Dr. Sutcliffe.

Commercial establishments are expected to use their best efforts to implement their face covering policies. This means that signs and verbal reminders are used but there is not a requirement that a business must turn away the customer. 

This is in line with the “good faith” enforcement framework of the Public Health Sudbury & Districts instructions which builds on education and reminders.

In Friday’s instruction letter, all employers are reminded of their ongoing responsibilities to maintain two metres distance between employees and clients, to screen employees and members of the public for COVID-19 symptoms, and to promote excellent hygiene practices including handwashing.

For owners or operators of commercial establishments or of public transit, the additional face covering responsibility comes into effect at 12:01 a.m., Wednesday, July 8. A face covering means a medical or non-medical mask or other face coverings such as a bandana, a scarf or cloth that covers the mouth and nose. Certain exemptions apply, for example, based on age or medical circumstances.

“I encourage everyone to be kind, patient, and respectful to one another. How we navigate this pandemic is our individual and our shared responsibility. These latest instructions continue to count on everyone’s best intentions and my confidence is well placed. I fully expect we will show the province and the world how to do this right,” said Sutcliffe.

Accumulating epidemiological evidence indicates that the widespread use of face coverings by all persons decreases the spread of respiratory droplets, and expert opinion supports the widespread use of face coverings to decrease transmission of COVID-19.

Public Health is reminding residents to follow public health guidance—wash your hands; cover your cough or sneeze with your arm or a tissue; avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth; stay two metres apart from others; wear your face covering, and stay home when ill.

If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, get tested. People who are asymptomatic, who are concerned that they have been exposed to COVID-19 are also encouraged to contact an assessment centre and get tested.

For more information please visit phsd.ca/COVID-19 or call Public Health Sudbury & Districts at 705-522-9200 (toll-free 1-866-522-9200).

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Health Unit declares second outbreak, this time in North Bay long-term care facility – BayToday

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The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit says it has declared the second respiratory outbreak of the day in the district, this one at Waters Edge long-term care facility in North Bay. The Health Unit adds, “The causative agent is COVID-19.”

Earlier today, the Health Unit declared an outbreak at a Parry Sound facility.

In a release concerning this latest case, the Health Unit states, “The individual who tested positive is a staff member at the long-term care home. The individual is currently in isolation. No residents at Waters Edge have tested positive for COVID-19.”

“Our staff are working with Waters Edge to provide important public health direction,” says Dr. Jim Chirico, the district’s Medical Officer of Health. “It is important that we do our best to keep our older and more vulnerable individuals safe. We remind everyone in our district to continue to practice physical distancing, use a face covering when distancing is a challenge, use proper coughing, sneezing and hand washing etiquette, and isolate when having symptoms or if they have come in close contact with someone with COVID-19 or suspected to have COVID-19.”

The North Bay Parry Sound catchment area has experienced some of the lowest COVID-19 positive test rates in the province. In the district, the Belvedere Heights and Waters Edge outbreaks are the third and fourth documented in a retirement or long-term care facility since the pandemic was declared in March. The other two outbreaks in the district are considered “resolved.”

According to the Ministry of Health, “An outbreak in a Long-Term Care Home is declared with a single, laboratory-confirmed case of COVID-19 in a resident or staff member. When only asymptomatic residents and/or staff with positive results are found as part of enhanced surveillance testing of residents and/or staff, it may not be necessary to declare an outbreak. An outbreak may be declared over when there are no new cases in residents or staff after 14 days.”

The Health Unit reminds the public there is no specific treatment for COVID-19.

“It is important to remember that most people with COVID-19 have no symptoms or mild symptoms. People who are mildly ill should isolate and care for themselves at home. Most will recover in one to two weeks by simply treating the symptoms. The public needs to remain cautious. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, isolate yourself and call a testing centre to book an appointment.

The Health Unit says if you have additional questions about COVID-19, call the call centre at 1-800-563-2808 option 5 or for more information, click here.

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Heath unit in Sudbury ordering use of masks in businesses, public transit effective July 8 – CTV News

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SUDBURY —
Public Health Sudbury and Districts has issued an order mandating businesses in Sudbury to require customers to wear masks when they enter the property.

Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, the medical officer of health, is also requiring passengers aboard city transit vehicles to wear masks. Both directive take effect July 8.

“The face covering requirement for commercial premises that are open to the public is in addition to the diligent work many are already doing to ensure physical distancing and hand sanitizers,” Sutcliffe said in a news release Friday. “Face coverings are extra protection to prevent COVID-19 spread, they also send a message that the wearer wants to protect others.”

She said the measures are in tandem with the gradual reopening of the province, which brings new risks of spreading the virus.

“Establishing common expectations about routine face covering helps reduce this risk now and will pave the way to successful Stage 3 re-opening,” Sutcliffe said. “It will also help protect us against a potential second wave in the fall and keep businesses and services up and running.”

As of July 8, city transit and businesses will have to have policies in place to stop people from entering if they are not wearing a face covering. The instructions are being issued under the authority of the provincial Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, Public Health Sudbury said.

Businesses don’t have to turn away customers

While commercial establishments are expected to use their best efforts to implement their face covering policies, there is no requirement that a business must turn away the customer not wearing a mask.

“This is in line with the ‘good faith’ enforcement framework of the Public Health Sudbury & Districts instructions, which builds on education and reminders,” the release said.

In the instruction letter sent out Friday, all employers are reminded of their ongoing responsibilities to maintain two metres distance between employees and clients, to screen employees and members of the public for COVID-19 symptoms, and to promote excellent hygiene practices including handwashing.

For the purposes of the directive, a face covering means a medical or non-medical mask or other face coverings such as a bandana, a scarf or cloth that covers the mouth and nose. Certain exemptions apply, for example, based on age or medical circumstances.

“I encourage everyone to be kind, patient, and respectful to one another,” Sutcliffe said. “How we navigate this pandemic is our individual and our shared responsibility. These latest instructions continue to count on everyone’s best intentions and my confidence is well placed. I fully expect we will show the province and the world how to do this right.”

Growing evidence shows the widespread use of face coverings decreases the spread of respiratory droplets, and expert opinion supports the widespread use of face coverings to decrease transmission of COVID-19.

Public Health is also reminding residents to follow public health guidance—wash your hands; cover your cough or sneeze with your arm or a tissue; avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth; stay two metres apart from others; wear your face covering, and stay home when ill.

If you have any COVID-19 symptoms, get tested. People who are asymptomatic, who are concerned that they have been exposed to COVID-19 are also encouraged to contact an assessment centre and get tested.

For more information please visit health unit’s website or call Public Health Sudbury & Districts at 705.522.9200 (toll-free 1.866.522.9200). 

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