Stricter COVID-19 restrictions for five Ontario regions

Further COVID-19 measures for the province to be announced on Monday

Hamilton will go into lockdown on Monday, joining Toronto and Peel where grey zone restrictions that were to expire next week will continue until Jan. 4 because of rising COVID-19 infections. York is also in lockdown.

On Monday at 12:01 a.m., most non-essential businesses in Hamilton will have to close.

Restrictions are also being tightened in Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox and Addington Public Health, Brant County Health Unit, and Niagara Regions. Sudbury will see a loosening of restrictions and move into the green zone.

Ontario Ministry of Health

Simcoe Muskoka and several GTA municipalities remain in the red zone including York Region.

Premier Ford said in a tweet he will be hosting another emergency meeting of health officials over the weekend and will announce any further COVID-19 measures for the province on Monday at 1 p.m.

“In the areas that are locked down right now that are expiring on Monday, I can tell you they won’t be expiring,” Ford told reporters during an emergency meeting on Friday. “We are going to continue on with the lockdowns within those regions and will have additional information on Monday for the balance of the province.”

The Ontario Hospital Association earlier this week urged the premier to put more regions into lockdown.

NDP leader Andrea Horwath slammed the premier in a tweet for not acting sooner.

“Telling people to stay tuned for more news next week isn’t acceptable,” said Horwath. “Covid-19 doesn’t take the weekend off. Instead of dithers and delays, while more people get sick, Doug Ford should be listening to doctors and taking action now to put new public health protections in place.”

The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit reported 62 new COVID-19 cases on Friday with 27 more recoveries. Of those new infections, 16 were in Barrie.