Premier Doug Ford has declared a state of emergency for the province of Ontario on Tuesday, March 17. This gives the provincial government the power to order businesses and workplaces to close instead of just making a recommendation. Supermarkets, pharmacies, and medical offices will remain open.
Public events of over 50 people are banned till March 30. All bars and restaurants closed. Only takeout will be allowed.
“We must come together as a province,” Ford said after declaring the state of emergency.
Ford has ordered the immediate closure of all bars and restaurants — except those offering takeout — as well as places of worship, theatres, private schools, and daycares.
A new $300 million relief package – the first stage of a larger initiative – will help people affected by the outbreak.
Ford stressed that “we will support you during these difficult times.”
He emphasized that “this is not a provincial shutdown.” Most businesses can remain open.