May 26, 2020
Ontario Extends Emergency Orders to Keep People Safe

The Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, has extended all emergency orders currently in force until May 29, 2020. That includes the closure of bars and restaurants except for takeout and delivery only, restrictions on social gatherings of more than five people, and staff redeployment rules for long-term care homes and congregate settings like retirement homes and women's shelters. The government is also allowing drive-in religious gatherings.

Today, the province officially enters the first stage of its Framework for Reopening the Province. As part of this initial stage, the government is permitting the reopening of some outdoor recreational amenities, including outdoor sports facilities and multi-use fields, off-leash dog areas, and outdoor picnic sites, benches and shelters in parks and recreational areas, effective as of Tuesday, May 19, 2020.

Outdoor playgrounds, play structures and equipment, fitness equipment, public swimming pools, splash pads and similar outdoor water facilities will remain closed until later stages of the province's reopening plan.

Click here to read the complete News release.

As Ontario Reopens, People Urged to Continue Following Public Health Advice

Face coverings now recommended when physical distancing is a challenge

As the Ontario government carefully and gradually reopens the province, those taking public transit, returning to work or going out shopping are being urged to continue to adhere to public health advice as the best line of defence against COVID-19. To assist the public, the Ministry of Health today released specific recommendations on how to choose, wear and care for appropriate face coverings used in public where physical distancing is not possible, along with additional safety measures for provincial transit agencies.

Since the beginning of the outbreak, Dr. David Williams, Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health, has advised people to wash their hands often, stay at home if feeling ill, and practise physical distancing by staying at least two metres apart from anyone outside their household. Now that the province is reopening, the Chief Medical Officer of Health and other health experts are recommending that individuals wear a face covering where physical distancing is not possible, such as on public transit or in a small grocery store or pharmacy. In order to assist people and reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19, the Ministry of Health released the following face covering recommendations:

  • Wear your face covering safely and snugly to cover your nose and mouth, without any gaps. Ensure your face covering is made of at least two layers of tightly woven material and can be cleaned multiple times without losing its shape;

  • Medical masks, such as surgical and N95 masks, should be reserved for use by health care workers, those providing direct care, first responders and individuals who are ill and must leave their home for essential reasons such as seeking medical care, picking up medication or groceries;

  • Face coverings should not be placed on or used by children under the age of two; anyone who has trouble breathing; and anyone who is unable to remove it without assistance.

Click here to read the complete News release.

Ontario Helps People Impacted by COVID-19 Get Back to Work

The province is investing in Ontario's first Virtual Action Centre, an online counselling and training portal, to support laid off and unemployed hospitality workers, and is helping apprentices by providing grants to purchase tools, protective equipment and clothing for their trade, along with forgiving previous loans to purchase tools.

Minister McNaughton today announced that the government is providing an Ontario Tools Grant of $2.5 million in 2020-21 and $7.5 million in 2021-22 and ongoing. This will help new eligible apprentices purchase the equipment they need to start their careers. The funding amounts will be distributed as follows:

  • $1,000 for those in motive power sector trades;
  • $600 for those in construction and industrial sector trades;
  • $400 for those in service sector trades.

To be eligible for the new grant, apprentices must have:

  • completed level 1 training on or after April 1, 2020;
  • an active registered training agreement; and
  • been registered as an apprentice for at least 12 months.

The government is also forgiving more than $10 million in outstanding loans owed by apprentices for tool purchases made at the beginning of their careers. The Loans for Tools Program allowed thousands of new apprentices to buy tools, equipment, clothing, manuals and code books required for their trade. About 19,000 apprentices who participated in the program owed, on average, $495.

Click here to read the complete News release.

Legislative changes allow corporations to operate virtually and electronically

The Government of Ontario is making it easier for people to conduct business and practice physical distancing in the new COVID-19 environment. The province is permitting Ontario corporations to conduct virtual meetings and to defer certain annual meetings in specified circumstances and is allowing the Ministry of Government and Consumer Services to accept copies of documents, electronic signatures on documents, and electronic filing of documents. These changes are part of COVID-19 Response and Reforms to Modernize Ontario Act, 2020.

Quick Facts

  • Legislative amendments to the Corporations Act, the Business Corporations Act, the Co-operative Corporations Act and the Condominium Act, 1998 related to virtual meetings and the deferral of annual meetings in some circumstances, are in force and retroactive to March 17, 2020, the day the Declaration of Emergency came into effect.

  • To enable businesses to file copies of documents, documents signed by electronic signature and temporary electronic filing to the Ministry, the Alternative Filing Methods for Business Act was introduced along with legislative amendments to the Business Corporations Act, Business Names Act, Corporations Act, Corporations Information Act, Co-operative Corporations Act, Extra-Provincial Corporations Act, Limited Partnerships Act, and the unproclaimed Not-for-Profit Corporations Act, 2010 (to take effect upon proclamation).

  • The Business Law Modernization and Burden Reduction Council is a short-term advisory body comprising eight members that have provided recommendations to the government on business law matters since February 2019.

Click here to read the complete News release.

Government Portal to Assist Businesses find PPE

As businesses re-open it is important that you review sector-specific guidelines to identify the need for personal protective equipment (PPE) and supplies to keep your employees, contractors, visitors and customers safe. Supplies are in high demand and the needs of frontline health care workers and first responders will continue to be prioritized.

The Ontario government has created a webpage which allows businesses to quickly identify if they can sell medical supplies, find personal protective equipment (PPE), solve problems, or volunteer to help protect against COVID-19.

Click below to find PPE.

Sea cans to COVID-19 isolation rooms: PCL, partners develop ‘Quaran-Tin Pods’

Officially called Quaran-Tin Pods, the modular units can be laid out for a range of functions — including in two- and five-bed models, or as a staff shower facility. The company says they can be set up with minimal site infrastructure and shipped quickly to anywhere in Canada. A prototype for the units, for instance, was developed and built in two weeks.

PCL’s Special Project wing partnered with Thor Plumbing and Heating, f-BLOK Architecture Inc. E.H. Price Industries and P4 Electrical Contractors on the new units.

Each has a single connection point to power the entire module, has built-in heating and cooling and has hook-ups for medical gases, such as oxygen. With the pandemic in mind, any exhaust from the negatively-pressurized rooms is HEPA-filtered before being released outside the container.

Click here to read the complete article.

Ontario’s health and economy are interdependent: Safety procedures are vital, says survey
As many businesses begin to reopen under new health guidelines, a group of Ontario business owners including the Ontario General Contractors Association (OGCA), say a survey indicates that safety procedures are vital to ensure an economic recovery.

The Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) and Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association commented following the release of new business confidence survey results from Campaign Research Inc., a market research firm.

Click here to read the complete article.

TCA Resources on COVID-19

To access TCA dedicated Covid-19 Updates, click here .