Regional chair issues statement as Durham prepares to move into Stage 3

The following statement is being issued on behalf of John Henry, Regional Chair and Chief Executive Officer for The Regional Municipality of Durham:

“Today, the Province of Ontario announced that Durham Region is moving into Phase 3 of the provincial reopening plan, effective this Friday, July 24. This means our economy will fully open; offering access to a wide variety of services via a ‘new normal.’

In Stage 3, residents can dine in at their favourite restaurants; catch a movie on the big screen; work out at a gym, fitness or yoga studio; or possibly, return to their desk in an office building. But, large public gatherings—such as concerts and sporting events—are still currently unavailable.

Residents may also notice that some establishments look different. It’s all part of an effort to meet physical distancing measures and/or operation at reduced capacity. We still need to follow public health recommendations; limiting risks until a vaccine is available or a treatment can be found.

Throughout this crisis, Regional staff continued to work to ensure that no one was left behind or fell through the cracks. Our many programs and services were provided virtually; with appointment times required for specific in-person interactions. We will continue this approach into Stage 3, while working to fully restore services with various health and safety measures.

And, although we are now moving into Stage 3, residents are reminded to continue following public health practices. Wearing a mask while in a commercial establishment, practise physical distancing, wash your hand frequently, and stay home when you are sick. In this stage, the province still has the authority to apply or tighten public health measures, if/when required.

We need to keep each other safe during this time, including those within our vulnerable populations. Under new legislation, the province can choose to lift the emergency declaration, while keeping certain measures in place. This includes prohibiting long-term care staff from working in more than one location, allowing health units to redeploy staff for contact tracing, and enabling construction of temporary health-care facilities.

Thank you for working together to help protect the health and safety of our communities. Your direct actions made an impact—an excellent example of what it means to be in this together.”

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