Doug Ford says to get ready for some good announcements later this week
Now in our eighth week of lockdown, Ontario residents are growing weary of working from home, staying away from friends, going outside only for essentials and otherwise missing out on all the little things we never knew we needed to feel good.
The COVID-19 pandemic is still very much a thing, even if we're on the first (and hopefully last) major outbreak's good side, but as new daily new case numbers drop, so too do our hopes rise.
Yesterday saw the reopening of select businesses for the first time since all non-essential services were shut down.
Car washes, garden centres, landscaping firms and a handful of other business types can now legally operate (under strict safety conditions), and more retailers are expected to join the list in coming weeks as Ontario follows its own "framework for reopening."
I’m excited over things opening. While it’s not a lot - it’s something. Yeah. I like hope.https://t.co/B1OTjtVuQ2— Sandra McIntosh (@sandramcintosh) May 4, 2020
No dates, not even tentative ones, were announced as part of the reopening plan when it was released last Monday, meaning we simply have to wait and see what Premier Doug Ford announces each day.
Today, the province announced the expansion of its free virtual mental health services for people suffering from anxiety and depression amid the pandemic.
Tomorrow, who knows? Only the government — and their leader says we can expect "some good announcements" later this week.
It was during the question period following his regularly scheduled press briefing on Tuesday that Ford effectively promised we'd all be able to go outside by May 24 weekend (though the boundaries of "outside" in this context have yet to be revealed.)
NEW: Premier Doug Ford says "yes" it's unfair that people get to go to cottage country during the Victoria Day long weekend, while the rest of us are stuck at home.— Colin D'Mello CTVNews (@ColinDMello) May 5, 2020
He says we will all be allowed to go outside in some capacity. #onpoli
CTV journalist Colin D'Mello got the prescient comment out of Ford with one banger of a question about cottage owners getting the premier's apparent blessing to head up north.
"There seem to be two sets of rules here: People who own a second home are being told that they are basically free to travel north and enjoy the fresh air," said D'Mello.
"Thousands of people who live in apartments all across the province and basically cannot afford a second home, or even one home for that matter, they're being told stay inside: You cannot go to a park, it is against the rules to go to a public pool, it is against the rules to go to a playground."
"How is that fair, Premier?" asked D'Mello. "And will we all get to go outside as well during the May 24 long weekend?"
Doug Ford Now Says 'Yes, You Will Be' Able To Go Outside On May 24 Weekend. it is noted that parks, beaches and camp sites could be opening up by then. No list on what will be open by then. #covidontario #coronavirus #covidcanada #covid19ontario #covid19canada #covid19on #onpoli— Austin (COVID-19 Ontario Updates) (@covid19canada_) May 5, 2020
Ford didn't hesitate in answering the question with a simple "Yes. You will be."
"I understand, and I agree with you 100 per cent Colin," said Ford of the issue.
"Its not fair and we'll have some good announcements moving forward this week."
Fingers crossed those good announcements include the relaxing of some social distancing rules... and the reopening of salons. A lot of us would like a touch-up or trim after eight weeks of quarantine hair.
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