Still within 2 meters of each other? It could cost you $ 5,000 under the new regulations, says Tory


In Toronto’s attempt to stop the spread of COVID-19, city officials announced on Thursday a new by-law that prohibits people from standing within two meters of each other in parts of the city – and the non-compliance could result in a fine of up to $ 5,000.

Mayor John Tory, accompanied by the Toronto medical officer of health and the fire chief, announced the change at their daily press conference on the city’s response to the new coronavirus pandemic.

The by-law, which will remain in effect for at least the next 30 days, is limited to interactions in city parks and squares. This is where city officials say they see the most overcrowding issues. It is also limited to two or more people who do not live together.

“Lives are potentially at stake and we will raise the temperature,” said Tory.

“We will continue to do everything we can as a municipal government to lock down the city and save lives.” “

Watch Tory talk about the new rules:

Toronto Mayor John Tory said the by-law will be in effect for at least 30 days. 1:36

Despite the new regulations, questions remain as to where people should and shouldn’t go in the city.

Can Torontonians Jog, Walk the Dog, or Walk the Park During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

According to public health officials and elected officials, the answer seems to be so far: it depends on the number of people doing the same thing.

Improved restrictions and recommendations released by Toronto Public Health on Wednesday advise people to limit their time outside to essential travel, but the guidelines still allow you to walk with pets or exercise every day as long as ‘a physical distance of two meters is possible.

Journalists today asked Toronto police chief Mark Saunders how officers would apply a new by-law that would prohibit people from standing within two meters of each other. Saunders also asked if the officers would be wearing protective gear. 1:51

Toronto medical officer of health Dr. Eileen of Villa described these nonessential outings as “reasonable things to do while trying to stay at home as much as possible”.

But Tory pointed to crowded parks, distinguishing Sunnyside Park by the lake, to suggest that some residents don’t take the rules seriously enough.

“That doesn’t mean you can’t go out, it’s just that in the places where people gather, they can’t do it right now,” said Tory on Metro Morning.

A sign at Sunnyside Park blocking access to the parking lot. The city says it will install larger concrete barriers because the drivers removed the doors. (Christopher Mulligan / CBC)

Facilities are closed, but parks are not

Although the city has closed a variety of outdoor amenities such as restrooms, off-leash dog areas, sports grounds, and picnic areas, other green spaces in parks and ravines are still open. to the public.

Asked by a CBC Radio listener who doesn’t know what to do when these spaces are crowded, Tory suggested residents look for quieter areas off the beaten track.

“They can take their car to a side street,” he suggested. “I have not heard many complaints about people saying that the side streets are crowded. “

Tory said he was particularly concerned about reports that drivers have removed the barriers blocking parking lots in city parks in recent days.

Parts of downtown Toronto have been easier to walk and cycle since governments have started to encourage people to go physical. (Evan Mitsui / CBC)

He suggested that the city start using the large concrete barricades to prevent drivers from entering. He said it would be the same barriers the city used to block access to unlicensed cannabis stores last summer.

“We have to respond accordingly,” said Tory.

De Villa said she continues to encourage residents to practice physical distance, although she and Tory have increasingly reminded residents of the grim situations that are unfolding in other parts of the world.

“Turn on your TV, watch what’s going on in New York and decide with us: we don’t want to go,” said Tory.

The TTC does not apply a cap to passengers

TTC, meanwhile, says it has no caps on passengers per vehicle.

“While we agree that 10 to 15 customers are a reasonable number, we prefer that operators continue to focus on moving our customers safely rather than counting heads,” the spokesperson said. TTC Stuart Green in a press release.

The TTC instead adds additional buses to the busiest routes, so there are fewer customers per vehicle, said Stuart.

Restricted Eaton Center service

As access to the Eaton Center is limited to essential services only, the mall said it had implemented “additional security measures”.

But that still doesn’t explain the on-board storefronts that have popped up around the perimeter of the Eaton Center.

“We made no changes to the storefronts. You will need to speak with the storefront retailer, “said CF Toronto Eaton Center in a statement.


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