The Ontario government announced on Friday (October 8, 2021) they will cautiously be lifting capacity limits on certain indoor and outdoor settings where proof of vaccination is required. In addition, outdoor settings that have a capacity below 20,000 people.
The removal of these limits came into effect on October 9, 2021, at 12:01 a.m.
Following the announcement, Dr.Kit Young Hoon Medical Officer of Health for the Northwestern Health Unit spoke on the province's decision.
“The vaccine is a very effective way to reduce the spread of COVID-19. I think it’s a reasonable decision to lift some of those restrictions,” said Young Hoon.
The government says that this approach will continue to help protect people and ensure the province continues to cautiously lift public health measures safely.
Capacity limits will be lifted to allow 100 per cent capacity in the following settings:
Concert venues, theatres, and cinemas;
Spectator areas of facilities for sports and recreational fitness (would not include gyms, personal training);
Meeting and event spaces (indoor meeting and event spaces will still need to limit capacity to the number that can maintain physical distancing);
Horseracing tracks, car racing tracks, and other similar venues; and
Commercial film and television productions with studio audiences.
Public health measures such as mask-wearing, screening, and the collecting of information will stay in effect in these settings. Proof of vaccination will still be required. In settings where 100 percent capacity is allowed, the requirement of social distancing has been removed, with limited exceptions.
In the Northwestern Health Unit catchment area, the recent vaccine data shows that 87.5 per cent of those eligible have at least one dose of the vaccine, and 80.8 per cent are fully vaccinated.
The NWHU is right behind the provincial vaccine data as 87.1 per cent of Ontarians have gotten one shot of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 82.4 per cent are fully immunized.