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A Further Update on COVID-19 – Additional Public Health Regions are Permitted to Enter Stage Two – June 16, 2020

June 16, 2020
by Israel Foulon LLP


On June 15, 2020, the Government of Ontario announced that public health officials have authorized additional regions to enter Stage Two of the Province’s plan to gradually reopen the economy.

As of Friday, June 19, 2020, at 12:01 a.m., the following regions can begin reopening according to the public health guidelines outlined for Stage Two:

  • 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.

You can access Israel Foulon’s full break down on what businesses are permitted to open during Stage Two HERE.

Regions not Permitted to Enter Stage Two

The following regions are not permitted to enter Stage Two until they are advised by public health that it is safe to do so:

  • Peel Public Health;
  • Toronto Public Health; and
  • Windsor-Essex County Health Unit

Health and Safety Guidelines for Employers Considering Reopening their Businesses

  • The Ministry of Labour has partnered with Ontario’s Health and Safety associations to develop sector-specific health and safety guidelines to help businesses safely reopen.
  • The full database can be accessed HERE.

Workplace PPE Supplier Directory

  • Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. David Williams, announced on May 20, 2020, that as people continue to enter public settings, they should be wearing non-medical masks when physical distancing is not possible.
  • The Ontario Government has provided an up to date list of companies and associations that are ready to supply businesses with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).  The list may be accessed HERE.

CaféTO – Toronto Restaurants May Access Additional Patio Space

The City of Toronto announced plans to assist restaurants, bars, and other food and drink establishments reopen once public health officials advise that the region can enter Stage Two.

  • Restauranteurs will be able to access public space on city streets and sidewalks to assist with expanding outdoor patio areas provided that they register their outdoor dining spaces with the City of Toronto.
  • The City will temporarily pause application and fee requirements to expedite approval for outdoor dining spaces.
  • Full program details for CaféTO can be accessed HERE.

Weddings and Funerals:

On June 13, 2020, the Government of Ontario announced easing of restrictions on social gatherings for those attending weddings and funerals. 

  • Indoor wedding and funeral ceremonies will be allowed up to 30% of the maximum capacity of the venue space.
  • Outdoor wedding and funeral ceremonies will be limited to 50 attendees.
  • All attendees must follow public health guidelines and maintain social distance from people not in the same household or their established 10-person circle.
  • The full Ontario Newsroom announcement may be accessed HERE.

Understanding Emergency Infectious Disease Leave (IDEL)

On May 29, 2020, the Government of Ontario published a new Regulation making time-limited amendments to the Employment Standard Act (ESA) under Ont. Reg. 228/20 to address issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic, including layoffs and constructive dismissal. For further clarification regarding how the IDEL provisions impact your obligations to employees, employers should review the Ministry of Labour’s updated guide to the Employment Standards Act.

  • You can access the guide’s section on IDEL HERE.
  • You can access Israel Foulon’s full breakdown of the IDEL Provisions HERE.
  • We recommend you seek legal advice if you have questions about how IDEL applies to your business.

Extending the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)

On June 16, 2020, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced plans to extend the CERB by an additional eight weeks. The CERB provides eligible Canadian residents with income replacement of $500 per week for up to a maximum of 24 weeks. Individuals affected by the COVID-19 pandemic may apply for the CERB from March 15, 2020, through October 3, 2020.

Given the exceptional and unprecedented situation, we expect further developments in the coming days.

Israel Foulon’s Response to COVID-19 Israel Foulon is assessing the situation as it evolves, and is taking all necessary precautions within its workplace. To slow the spread of COVID-19 and for the health of our team and clients, absent extraordinary circumstances we are working remotely until further notice whenever possible. However, please be aware that our offices remain open and are fully functioning. In the circumstances, we encourage our clients to contact us by phone and email to the extent possible. Voicemail messages left at our office phone numbers are immediately forwarded via email. All messages will be promptly responded to. We remain steadfast in our commitment to our clients and would be more than happy to assist you with concerns regarding COVID-19 or any other employment or labour matters.

Legal Disclaimer

This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to provide legal advice, which in all circumstances must be tailored to the specific facts of any problem. You should obtain a proper legal consultation in order to determine how this article applies to your specific situation. Please feel free to contact Israel Foulon LLP to learn more at 416-640-1550.