The number of COVID-19 cases in Grey-Bruce is increasing, and the Grey Bruce Health Unit warns that we could be moving from the Green to the Yellow level of Ontario's COVID-19 colour-coded framework “in the imminent future.”
Moving to the Yellow level would mean greater restrictions and enhanced enforcement – including operational restrictions on bars and restaurants, sports and recreational facilities, personal care services, retail spaces and other businesses.
"It is in our control to change the course,” says the region’s medical officer of health, Dr. Ian Arra.
The province's new framework looks at the number of cases in a region, as well as the percentage of positive COVID-19 tests, health system capacity and other factors, to place each region in a zone -- Green, Yellow, Orange, Red or Grey – with increasing restrictions and protective measures for each.
Grey-Bruce is currently in the Green.
However, as of Nov. 18, 2020 there were 42 active cases, and close to 200 active high-risk contacts in region, the health unit reported. There has also been a significant increase in the average number of close contacts for each case. If the trend continues, the case and contact management capacity that we need to maintain control over the situation will be challenged, says the medical officer of health.
Potential Effect on Businesses
The Yellow zone would mean the following changes for businesses:
- Restaurants and bars to close at midnight.
- Liquor to be served only from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. (applies to restaurants, bars, entertainment venues, casinos and meeting and event spaces)
- Only 6 people per table in restaurants, bars or meeting and event spaces
- Contact information required from anyone seated at a table
- Music must remain at a “conversation level,” no louder, in stores, restaurants, meeting and event spaces and sports facilities
- Contact information required from all guests receiving personal care services
- Three-metre spacing between people in recreational facilities with weights and fitness classes
- Appointments and contact information required at recreational facilities; attendance required for team sports
- Recreational classes limited to 10 people indoors, and 25 people outdoors
- 50 people allowed indoors in areas with weight or exercise equipment (with people remaining 3 metres apart)
Please remind your employees to follow COVID-19 protocols and practice the 3 Ws: WASH your hands frequently, WATCH your distance, and WEAR your face covering correctly.
Other actions employers and employees can take:
- Plan for outdoor activities whenever possible
- Stay home if you are sick
- Avoid close, unprotected contact with people from outside your household
- Avoid travel to areas with higher transmission
- Minimize non-essential travel
- Be kind, be calm, be safe
- Stay informed