June 11th 2020 | Weekly Update

Published on June 11, 2020

I am happy to confirm that as of 12:01 am on June 12th, places of worship across the province can reopen for worship services at no more than 30% of the building's capacity.

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Dear Neighbour,

We have had another big week here in Ontario, as we continue to make progress in stopping the spread of COVID-19.

As of 12:01 am Friday morning, the Government of Ontario will be increasing the limits on social gatherings from five to ten. This increase will be applied across Ontario regardless of what stage the region is in. It's important to also note that physical distancing recommendations are still in place and should be followed in any gathering. Non-medical coverings also continue to be recommended by the Chief Medical Officer of Health, particularly in situations where distancing can be difficult or impossible. 
In recent weeks, I've received calls from a number of constituents and faith organizations across the riding about places of worship. I want you to know that your voices have been heard. 

We know how important faith is to many, and thanks to your your efforts and advocacy, I am happy to confirm that as of 12:01 am on June 12th, places of worship across the province can reopen for worship services at no more than 30% of the building's capacity.  They will need to adhere to health and safety guidelines including physical distancing during worship.
On Monday, the government also announced 34 of 44 public health units in Ontario will be proceeding into Stage 2 of the Framework to Reopen our Province. While Toronto and our neighbouring public health units were not included in the first group, the province will review the status of the remaining 10 public health units every Monday based on public health considerations. 

Stage 2 of the Framework will allow for the reopening of: 
  • Outdoor dine-in services at restaurants, bars and other establishments, including patios, curbside, parking lots and adjacent properties;
  • Select personal and personal care services with the proper health and safety measures in place, including tattoo parlours, barber shops, hair salons and beauty salons;
  • Shopping malls under existing restrictions, including food services reopening for take-out and outdoor dining only;
  • Tour and guide services, such as bike and walking, bus and boat tours, as well as tasting and tours for wineries, breweries and distilleries;
  • Water recreational facilities such as outdoor splash pads and wading pools, and all swimming pools;
  • Beach access and additional camping at Ontario Parks;
  • Camping at private campgrounds;
  • Outdoor-only recreational facilities and training for outdoor team sports, with limits to enable physical distancing;
  • Drive-in and drive-through venues for theatres, concerts, animal attractions and cultural appreciation, such as art installations;
  • Film and television production activities, with limits to enable physical distancing;
To support the reopening, the Ontario Government will allow restaurants and bars to temporarily extend outdoor patio spaces to safely accommodate patrons and staff once licensed establishments are permitted to fully reopen for business. While the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) will not require licensees to apply or pay a fee for these temporary extensions, licensed establishments must ensure they have municipal approval and meet all other applicable requirements. 

The Ontario government also intends to take action to protect commercial tenants from being locked out or having their assets seized by their landlords due to the negative impacts of COVID-19. Proposed changes to the Commercial Tenancies Act would, if passed, temporarily halt evictions of businesses that are eligible for federal/provincial rent assistance. If passed, the legislation would reverse evictions that occurred on or after June 3, 2020.
Today, the government also announced a plan to resume visits to long-term care homes, retirement homes and other congregate care settings, which is something many constituents have asked for. Beginning next Thursday, June 18th, family members and friends can visit these settings under certain conditions. Long-term care homes will allow outdoor visits of one person per resident each week. Retirement homes will resume indoor and outdoor visits in designated areas or resident suites when physical distancing can be maintained. Other residential care settings will be able to allow outdoor visits of two people at a time. Physical distancing will be required for all visits. This approach will ensure the health and safety of residents, staff and visitors.

Furthermore, visitors will be subject to strict health and safety protocols: 
  • Requiring visitors to pass active screening, including confirming that they have tested negative for COVID-19 within the previous two weeks,
  • Complying with the infection prevention and control protocols.
  • Wearing a face covering during visits.
Eglinton-Lawrence is one of the most accessible ridings in the province for transit. I know many of you rely on public transit to run errands, buy groceries, and/or go to work. This week, the Ministry of Transportation released Public Safety Guidance which outlines in detail information to help protect employees and passengers traveling on transit from the COVID-19 outbreak. This is an important step to help us gradually resume normal activities while keeping health and safety as a priority. 
June 10th has quickly arrived and we have now closed the Eglinton-Lawrence Children's Drawing Contest. I've received numerous drawings with representations of the coronavirus itself and landmarks like the CN Tower. I cannot wait to publish some of them in my next quarterly newsletter. Thank you to all the children who participated and to the parents/guardians who helped them get their submissions to my office. 

Although my constituency office remains closed to walk-ins, my staff and I are working remotely and remain available to answer your inquiries via phone or email. Please contact us if you are in need of assistance - we are here to support you and appreciate your patience as it may take us longer than normal to get back to you.

Robin Martin, MPP

(416) 781-2395 - [email protected]
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  • The City of Toronto has launched SwimTO, a quick start program that will expedite the opening of the City's beaches, outdoor pools, wading pools and splash pads. 
  • The City of Toronto will begin to offer summer camps starting on July 13th, as part of the CampTO program. 
  • The City of Toronto has announced an expansion to the BikeSharing program which will be expanded to 20 of Toronto's 25 Wards adding a total of 1,850 new bicycles, 160 stations and 3,615 docking points to the already expansive network. After this announcement, the system will grow to a total of 6,850 bikes, 625 stations, 12,000 docking points.
  • The TTC has announced that it intends to make face coverings mandatory on transit effective July 2, 2020. 

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