Feb 18, 2021

By Christine Ross

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It sounds like the province will side with the top doctors in Toronto and Peel and grant at least a two week extension to the stay-at-home order.

“I’m sure we’re going to follow their advice,” said Premier Doug Ford. “I will never waver from the medical officers’ advice, nobody understands their area in Peel and Toronto more than the local medical officers of health and we’re very concerned about the U-K variant, the South African variant and the Brazilian variant.”

Chief medical officers for Toronto and Peel have written to the province asking for a two week delay in re-opening until March 9th amid a rise in COVID variant cases. But despite the plea and a request from York Region to move to RED in the framework, Ontario’s top doctor won’t reveal his recommendation to cabinet.

“We have had a number of teleconferences with each of the three and asked them their perspective on the matter, it’s all part of informing our recommendations that we make preliminary to the minister and then the final decision for cabinet Friday,” said Dr. David Williams.

Cabinet meets Friday morning and will later announce the decision on reopening plans for Toronto, Peel, York as well as North Bay-Parry Sound.

Dr. Williams is also urging residents to avoid region-hopping to take advantage of shopping and restaurants open outside your municipality.

Meantime, Ontario has identified 359 variants of concern in total up 40 since Tuesday. The majority of those are the B-1-1-7, the variant first discovered in the U-K.

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