Rules and Restrictions for Red Zone Regions Under Ontario’s New Colour-Coded COVID-19 Framework

Ontario government rolled out a new colour-coded system on Tuesday, November 3rd to mitigate the rapid spread of COVID-19 across the province.

On November 16th, Ontario lowered the thresholds for imposing stricter COVID-19 measures under its colour-coded framework in light of new projections that showed the province is on track to see 6,500 new daily COVID-19 cases by the middle of next month.

**Updated on Nov 20 to add changes starting Nov 23**

The Ontario regions under the Red or Control (stringent measures) zone and the rules and restrictions are listed below:

Ontario Health Regions in the Red Zone

From November 16th – as per the new threshold:

  1. Hamilton Public Health Services
  2. Halton Region Public Health
  3. Peel Regional Health Unit (In Lockdown starting Nov 23)
  4. Toronto Public Health (enhanced measures for Toronto with no indoor dining/indoor fitness classes. In Lockdown starting Nov 23)
  5. York Region Public Health

From November 23

  1. Durham Region Health Department
  2. City of Hamilton Public Health Services
  3. Halton Region Public Health
  4. Region of Waterloo Public Health and Emergency Services
  5. York Region Public Health

Rules and Restrictions for Regions in the Red Zone

General public health measures (gatherings, workplace requirements and face coverings)

  • Gathering limit for all organized public events and social gatherings:
    • 5 people indoors
    • 25 people outdoors
  • Religious services, weddings and funerals:
    • 30% capacity indoors
    • 100 people outdoors
  • Requirement for workplace screening
  • Face coverings required in:
  • Where patrons without face coverings are within two metres of workers, workers must use additional protections such as eye protection
  • Workplaces must develop and implement a communication/public education plan (highlighting risk)
  • Physical distancing must be maintained
  • Non-essential travel from areas of high-transmission to areas of low transmission should be avoided

Restaurants, bars and other food and drink establishments

  • Maximum number of patrons permitted to be seated indoors is 10
  • Require patrons to be seated; 2 metre minimum between tables
  • Outdoor dining, take out, drive through, and delivery permitted
  • Dancing, singing and the live performance of brass or wind instruments are prohibited
  • Require patron contact info (one per party)
  • No buffet style service
  • Night clubs only permitted to operate as restaurant or bar
  • Line-ups and patrons congregating outside venues managed by venue; 2 metres distance and face covering required
  • Face coverings except when eating or drinking only
  • Eye protection where patrons without face coverings are within 2 metres of workers
  • Limit operating hours, establishments close at 10 p.m.
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor permitted between 10 p.m. to 9 a.m.
  • Require contact information for all seated patrons
  • Limit of 4 people may be seated together
  • Limit volume of music (to be no louder than the volume of a normal conversation)
  • Require screening of patrons (for example, questionnaire)
  • Closure of strip clubs
  • A safety plan must be available upon request

Sports and recreational fitness facilities

  • Maximum 50 people per facility (revoke OCMOH approved plan) in all combined recreational fitness spaces or programs (not pools, rinks at arenas, community centres, and multi-purpose facilities)
  • Gyms and fitness studios permitted to be open with:
    • 10 people indoors (classes)
    • 25 people outdoors (classes)
    • 10 people indoors (areas with weights or exercise equipment)
  • All sports and recreational programs in other facilities (arenas and multiplexes) limited to 10 people per room indoors and 25 outdoors
  • Team sports must not be practiced or played except for training (no games or scrimmage)
  • No contact permitted for team or individual sports
  • No spectators permitted (exemption for parent and guardian supervision of children)
  • Exemption for high performance athletes and parasports
  • Limit duration of stay to 90 minutes except if engaging in sport
  • Limit volume of music to conversation level and prevent shouting by both instructors and members of the public
  • Face coverings required except when exercising
  • Increase spacing between patrons to 3 metres for areas of a sport or recreational facility where there are weights or weight machines and exercise and fitness classes
  • Require contact information for all patrons and attendance for team sports
  • Require reservation for entry; one reservation for teams
  • Require screening of members of the public, including spectators (for example, questionnaire)
  • A safety plan must be available upon request

Meeting and event spaces

  • Maximum of 50 people per facility (revoke capacity limit on a per room basis as per OCMOH plan)
  • Facility limits:
    • 10 people indoors
    • 25 people outdoors
  • Booking multiple rooms for the same event not permitted
  • Limit operating hours, establishments must close at 10 p.m.
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor permitted between 10 p.m. to 9 a.m.
  • Require contact information for all seated patrons
  • Limit of 4 people may be seated together
  • Limit volume of music (to be no louder than the volume of a normal conversation)
  • Require screening of patrons (for example, questionnaire)
  • A safety plan must be available upon request

Retail

  • Fitting rooms must be limited to non-adjacent stalls
  • Line-ups and patrons congregating outside venues managed by venue; 2 metre distance and face covering required
  • Limit volume of music (to be no louder than the volume of a normal conversation)
  • Consider limiting capacity in retail stores and in shopping malls during winter holiday season
  • For malls:
    • Maximum 10 patrons permitted to be seated indoors in mall food court
    • Require screening of patrons at mall entrances (for example, questionnaire)
    • a safety plan must be available upon request

Personal care services

  • Oxygen bars, steam rooms, saunas, whirlpools, bath houses, other adult venues, hot tubs, floating pools and sensory deprivation pods closed (some exceptions)
  • Services requiring removal of face coverings prohibited
  • Change rooms and showers closed
  • Require contact information from all patrons
  • Require screening of patrons (for example, questionnaire)
  • A safety plan must be available upon request

Casinos, bingo halls and gaming establishments

  • Limits:
    • 10 people per facility indoors
    • 25 people outdoors
  • Table games are prohibited
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor permitted between 10 p.m. to 9 a.m.
  • Require contact information from all patrons
  • Require screening of patrons (for example, questionnaire)
  • A safety plan must be available upon request

Cinemas

  • Closed, except for:
    • drive-in cinemas
    • rehearsal or performing a recorded or broadcasted event
  • Limit of 50 people per facility (revoke OCMOH approved plan)
  • Face coverings except when eating or drinking only
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor permitted between 10 p.m. to 9 a.m.
  • Require contact information from all patrons
  • Require screening of patrons (for example, questionnaire)
  • Singers and players of brass or wind instruments must be separated from any other performers by plexiglass or other impermeable barrier

Performing arts facilities

  • Closed to spectators
  • Rehearsal or performing a recorded or broadcasted event permitted
  • Performers and employees must maintain 2 metre physical distance except for purposes of the performance
  • Singers and players of brass or wind instruments must be separated from any other performers by plexiglass or other impermeable barrier
  • Drive-in performances permitted
  • Liquor sold or served only between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • No consumption of liquor permitted between 10 p.m. to 9 a.m.
  • Require contact information from all patrons
  • Require screening of patrons (for example, questionnaire)
  • A safety plan must be available upon request

For more information, see Ontario.ca

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  • 2 Comments

    Page 1 of 1
    1. BB

      Per the announcement yesterday, all areas in the “red zone” will now have a 5-person limit for all indoor public and social gatherings.

      With how confusing these times are to navigate, it’s important that journalists and websites relaying this information are presenting ACCURATE data, and don’t mislead the public. You may want to update your information to reflect the correct details.

      November 21, 2020 at 7:41 AM
    2. Lonnie

      I’m wondering if the 5 person cap for indoors is total including family members or on top of # of family members. Thanks..

      November 21, 2020 at 1:51 PM

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