The City of Winnipeg is moving to Orange: Restricted.
As of Monday, September 28th, several restrictions will be in place for Winnipeg and some surrounding areas.
Masks will be mandatory in all indoor public places in Winnipeg and gatherings will also be restricted to 10 people, both indoors and outdoors.
Masks do not need to be worn outdoors.
"Seeing the numbers today, we really wanted to see it going into the weekend," Dr. Brent Roussin, Manitoba's chief public health officer, says about today's announcement.
Roussin says this will last four weeks, the length of two incubation periods.
He says if most people properly wear a mask, they will see a difference in case numbers. The doctor says Winnipeg will not see the impact for one or two weeks.
Weddings and funerals are included in the gathering sizes. Church capacity can remain at a 30 per cent max capacity, and if cohorting, groups will need to change from a maximum of 50 to a maximum of 10 people.
"Things like visit outdoors is much better than enclosed spaces," Dr. Brent Roussin says.
He says if a space is crowded, Manitobans should consider leaving.
If you are seated and distanced in places like a restaurant, masks can be removed.
For those working in a non-public facing place, masks are not required if workers are distanced.
A growing test positivity rate, an increase in testing demand, and large numbers of close clusters led to the decision to move Winnipeg on the scale.
Existing orders and rules for schools, child care, retail, museums, theatres and casinos will remain the same for the time being. Dr. Brent Roussin says additional measures may be taken in Winnipeg in the future.
This change to the response level includes the:
- City of Winnipeg;
- City of Selkirk;
- Town of Stonewall;
- RM of Cartier;
- RM of Headingly;
- RM of Macdonald;
- RM of Ritchot;
- RM of Rockwood;
- RM of Rosser;
- RM of Springfield;
- RM of St. Andrews;
- RM of St. Clements;
- RM St. Francois-Xavier;
- RM of Tache;
- RM of West St. Paul;
- RM of East St. Paul;
- Town of Niverville; and
- Village of Dunnottar.
Steinbach is not included.
Roussin says Friday's announcement comes after watching Winnipeg's COVID growth for "some time." He says the province needed time to communicate and create plans.
Roussin says all restrictions have a "significant impact" that the province needs to be mindful of.
Winnipeg is seeing close contact lists are growing, particularly by young people attending restaurant and bars.
"Everyone wants to be part of the solution," Roussin says about working with restaurants on curbing COVID. "We need to change the way things are operating right now."
The Province announced 54 new cases of COVID and the five-day test positivity rate is 2.6 percent. The number of cases in Manitoba is 1,764.
Public health officials are also reporting one death, a woman in her 90s from the Winnipeg health region. They say this is linked to an outbreak at Parkview Place personal care home. This brings the total number of deaths to 19.
The data shows:
- two cases in the Prairie Mountain Health region;
- two cases in the Interlake-Eastern region;
- two cases in the Northern health region;
- four cases in the Southern Health-Santé Sud; and
- 44 cases in the Winnipeg health region.
The data also shows:
- 487 active cases and 1,258 individuals have recovered from COVID-19;
- there are 13 people in hospital and six people in intensive care; and
- the number of deaths due to COVID-19 is 19.
The province says 1,607 COVID tests were completed on Wednesday, and 2.354 tests were complete on Thursday. Since early February, 173,999 tests have been completed.
Public health officials say River East Collegiate in Winnipeg had a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the school on Sept. 18. The exposure was assessed to be low risk and the infection was not acquired at school.
The COVID-19 outbreaks over at Fred Douglas Lodge and Concordia Place personal care homes are considered over. The sites have returned to the Caution (yellow) level on the #RestartMB Pandemic Response System for the weekend.
The chief provincial public health officer is strongly encouraging residents of and visitors to Winnipeg to focus on these fundamentals to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
- People must stay home if sick.
- Wash/sanitize your hands, cover your cough and physically distance when you are with people outside your household.
- If you cannot physically distance, you should wear a mask to help reduce your risk.
- Reduce the number of close contacts outside your household, and avoid closed-in or crowded spaces.