It looks like the stay-at-home order in Ontario may be extended yet again
Residents have been wringing their hands waiting for 12:01 a.m. on May 20, when we all perhaps naively hoped some things could finally reopen after yet another stint of forced closures that took away "non-essential" retail stores after just one month, patio dining after just two weeks, and prevented other businesses from opening at all since the fall.
But the prospect of public restrictions being drawn out longer than initially expected, though discouraging and even devastating, is something we should be used to by now in the land of the longest lockdown on the continent.
From the Toronto Star ... Tory MPPs were told earlier this week that golf courses will remain closed until at least June 2.. the current stay-home order is scheduled to expire May 19, though Solicitor General Jones is widely expected to extend it by two weeks until June 2.'— Catherine Stewart (@nightowl905) May 8, 2021
Golf course executives in the province have apparently been told by MPPs that they should expect to have to remain shuttered due to public health and safety measures until at least June 2 — two weeks later than when we all thought the stay-at-home order, which went from four weeks long to six mid-April, would be lifting.
The new key health indicator target that Premier Doug Ford and his team are allegedly trying to hit before loosening lockdown restrictions whatsoever is 1,000 or fewer new cases of the virus per day.
The latest data from May 9 showed 2,716 new cases provincewide that day, and 3,216 the day prior. Meanwhile, 6,238,778 doses of the vaccine have been administered among a population of approximately 14.5 million in a program that is finally beginning to ramp up.
NEW - Health Minister Elliot asked if the stay at home order will be extended says “We’re looking at things daily, what I do know is that we’re going to have to see our numbers go down” “We’re going to need to see them go down more before we can change the stay at home order” pic.twitter.com/N9PUqG2eMB— Richard Southern (@richard680news) May 10, 2021
These include a weekly incidence rate of 40 per 100,000 or more, 2.5 per cent positivity among those tested, "repeated outbreaks in multiple sectors and settings," an increasing number of large outbreaks and a rising level of community transmission.
These benchmarks are unfortunately either vague or have an "or more" attached, meaning it's hard to say what other figures we should be aiming for beyond the daily case counts — but Ontario's Associate Medical Officer of Health Dr. Barbara Yaffe has already said she doesn't expect we will be getting there by May 20.
NEW: Health Minister @celliottability suggests (as expected) stayhome order likely to be extended to June 2. "We need to see a pretty significant drop in the number of cases," she tells reporters. #onpoli— Rob Ferguson (@robferguson1) May 10, 2021
Let's hope that another two weeks will somehow get us to where health officials want us to be as businesses continue to flounder and residents grow progressively more restless and, frankly, miserable.
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