ontario lockdown

Doug Ford says he is 99 per cent sure there will never be another lockdown in Ontario

It's hard to tell if Ontario Premier Doug Ford and his team were more hated for opening things up too early at previous points in the pandemic or keeping things closed down for too long after said reopening, but regardless of who you speak to, lockdown has been a highly sensitive and contentious issue in the province.

But, rest assured, we won't have to worry about it ever again, if the words of Ford himself — who has numerous times has said he can't stand lockdowns— are anything to go by.

"Everyone's worked hard: healthcare folks have worked hard, the people of Ontario... we just can't go back, we have to go forward. We can't afford another lockdown,"  the premier said in response to a question about future restrictions during a media briefing on Thursday.

He added that he's "99 per cent sure" the province won't face any of the more stringent measures we've had to weather in recent months, though "nothing in this pandemic is 100 per cent" and he will always follow the guidance of his health table.

Ford also touted the province's vaccination rates to the first in-person press gallery he's had in a while, saying that if we hit future vaccination targets, things will be fine.

At the moment, we are leading the world in first vaccinations, with a rate of almost 80 per cent, while approximately 60 per cent of eligible adults in the province are now fully inoculated.

"I have all the confidence in the world that we're going to go back to where we were before the pandemic," he continued. "We just have a little more to go to hit that 75 per cent and we'll do it.... everyone, please get out there and get vaccinated."

The 75 per cent that Ford is referring to are the thresholds outlined by the province's new Chief Medical Officer of Health, who stated last week that our departure from Step 3 will depend upon 80 per cent of residents 12 and over having at least one dose of an approved COVID-19 shot, and 75 per cent having both.

This, along with the performance of other key health indicators, will put the province not into a Step 4, but "a full opening with some public health measures, if appropriate."

Lead photo by

Jeremy Gilbert

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