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Provincial COVID-19 team to visit Durham businesses this week

A COVID-19 ‘education and enforcement’ team is set to visit businesses in Durham Region later this week.

According to a media release from the Durham Region Health Department, the visits are part of a province-wide business education and enforcement campaign designed to ensure organizations are taking necessary steps to keep employees, consumers and the public safe from the spread of COVID-19.

“This campaign supports the current efforts of various provincial offences officers, including police, municipal bylaw officers and public health inspectors, to educate businesses and enforce COVID-19 health and safety requirements,” the media release reads.

“Throughout this campaign, this team of provincial offences officers will visit local businesses, including retail stores, restaurants and other area businesses, to provide guidance on how to operate safely and comply with public health requirements outlined in the Reopening Ontario Act, 2020.”

To date, this campaign has resulted in visits to over 1,000 businesses in communities across Ontario.

“At each visit, provincial offences officers provide business owners with guidance on how to operate safely during the pandemic and follow public health measures. Businesses will be emailed a report after each visit,” the media release reads.

“These inspections primarily focus on education and outreach and help to confirm that businesses are operating safely and keeping employees, consumers and the public protected.”

The media release states that the most common areas of non-compliance to date have been improper mask use, lack of employee screening and improper sanitization.

“Locally, the health department has responded to over 900 inquiries and complaints related to businesses, organizations and the public regarding lack of compliance with COVID-19 public health measures since Nov. 20,” the media release reads.

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