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Following the expiration of the current stay-at-home order on June 2, the Ontario government has just announced a gradual 3-step roadmap to safely reopening.
Starting this weekend on Saturday, May 22, prior to the installation of the 3-step plan, the provincial government will allow for certain outdoor recreation to reopen, including tennis courts and golf courses. Along with that, gatherings of up to five people will be allowed outdoors -- but not in relation to patio dining.
In regards to restaurants and bars, the province is aiming to reopen patios and outdoor dining on or around June 14, in accordance with phase one of the 3-step roadmap. Dining will be limited to four individuals per table. As mentioned, this is in line with the first step of the government's roadmap to success, where there is a focus on allowing outdoor activities with small crowds to take place. This includes retail with restrictions, outdoor gatherings with up to ten people, splash pads, swimming pools and fitness classes.
Once phase two rolls around and approximately 70 per cent of adults have their first dose, outdoor dining will expand to allow six individuals per table. For those with hopes to resume indoor dining, that is expected to surface during phase three of the plan, when approximately 70-80 per cent of adults have at least one dose of the vaccine, with 25 per cent of adults ideally being fully vaccinated by August.
In the case of all phases, according to Mayor Ford and Minister Elliot, the speed in which the province enters them will depend on the rate of province-wide vaccination and through tracking key public health indicators. As a result, the province will remain in each phase for 21 days to allow officials to properly evaluate how Ontarians are doing, seeing if they're ready to move to the next step based on key indicators.
Ford notes that the single biggest factor in the province's fight against COVID right now is ensuring that as many people as possible are vaccinated. He also mentions that this 3-step plan is being approached in a careful and disciplined way that is transparent and predictable to give Ontarians a clear framework of what to expect.
Outdoor dining in Ontario with four individuals per table will hopefully take effect around mid June. From there, in approximately 21 days when the province enters phase two, six individuals will be allowed per table and for the final phase approximately 21 days after reopening phase two, indoor dining will finally resume.
With CafeTO patios already being set-up, you'll be able to support your favourite local restaurants in person around June 14.