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Hamilton unveils full list of COVID ‘Lockdown’ restrictions; asks Province to help small businesses

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Hamilton unveils full list of COVID ‘Lockdown’ restrictions; asks Province to help small businesses

The view from the Hamilton Mountain.

As of 12:01 a.m. Monday (Dec. 21), the City of Hamilton entered the Grey—Lockdown category of the Province’s COVID-19 Response Framework.

There are a total of 4925 cases, an increase of 40 positive cases from Sunday, and 138 deaths from COVID-19 in Hamilton.

The City is also reporting that of the 4,925 cases, 3,792 or 77 per cent have been resolved.

“I support the restrictions and guidelines announced by the Province, but I am also making a personal appeal to everyone in our community to stay home. Hamilton, this is serious,” said Mayor Fred Eisenberger.

“We need to preserve hospital capacity, not only for patients suffering from COVID, but for emergencies and surgeries such as cancer treatments. The health of everyone in our community is at stake.”

The objective of the Grey category is to “implement widescale measures and restrictions, including closures, to halt or interrupt transmission,” according to the Ontario government.

“I know many, such as small business owners and their employees, have already made sacrifices,” added Eisenberger. “That’s why I am calling on the Provincial and Federal governments to provide additional supports for small business and sick leave benefits for anyone who contracts COVID-19, or needs to isolate.”

“I know this is the time of the year when we want to be with our families. But this must not happen now.  Do it for our families, for our frontline and essential workers, for our health care system, small businesses and for our neighbours.”

These measures and restrictions include:

  • No indoor organized public events and social gatherings, except with members of the same households. Individuals who live alone, including seniors, may consider having exclusive, close contact with another household to help reduce the negative impacts of social isolation
  • Limit for outdoor organized public events and social gatherings, provided that physical distancing can be maintained, is 10 people
  • Indoor and outdoor service at restaurants, bars and food/drink establishments is not permitted. Take-out, drive-through and delivery are permitted.
  • Most facilities for indoor or outdoor sports and recreational fitness activities are closed.
  • In-person retail shopping is not permitted.
  • Personal care services are closed.

The public are advised of the following:

  • Stay home as much as possible with trips outside the home limited to necessities such as food, medication, medical appointments, or supporting vulnerable community members.
  • Employers in all industries should make every effort to allow employees to work from home.
  • Virtual gatherings or events are the safest way to visit or recognize occasions with people outside your household.
  • Wear a mask or face covering when around others from another household, out in public places, or outdoors when unable to stay physically distant.
  • Wash your hands often.
  • If you have any COVID-19 symptoms or are not feeling well, stay isolated at home and get tested for COVID-19.

City Service Impacts

There are a number of closures and restrictions on municipal services as a result of entering the Grey–Lockdown category. These are outlined in detail at www.hamilton.ca/covidclosures

  • The cancellation of all recreation programming and the closure of all municipal recreation centres (except those that provide childcare)
  • The closure of all municipal museums.
  • The closure of the Gage Park greenhouses.
  • A number of City services can only be accessed with an appointment. Make an appointment at 905-546-CITY (2489)
    • All services at City Hall
    • All services at a Municipal Service Centre
    • Provincial Offences Administration Office
    • Animal Services
    • Licensing Counter
  • Residents are encouraged to access municipal services online where available: www.hamilton.ca/onlinecityservices  

Community Cold Response Contingency Plans

The City and partners have enacted contingency plans that ensure community warming locations are available in the event a Cold Alert is issued during the Lockdown period. This includes activation of nine Recreation Centres as community warming locations, all Hamilton Public Library branches during regular operating hours, and the availability of community drop-in programsLearn more about the City’s Community Cold Response by visiting www.hamilton.ca/cold

Winter in Hamilton: Outdoor Skating Rinks

Earlier this month, the City of Hamilton launched a new “Winter in Hamilton” program, which is an online collection of winter activities, sports and other safe things for residents to do outside in Hamilton this winter. While Public Health is continuing to encourage residents to avoid unnecessary trips outside the home and to limit close contact with those they don’t live with, it’s still important to find ways to keep up with physical health and mental wellbeing.

“Winter in Hamilton” features dozens of safe opportunities for getting outdoors and exercising this winter. Residents can visit www.hamilton.ca/winter to access an extensive list of all kinds of activities that are (or will become) available this winter.

The City has extended the hours of its outdoor skating rinks to run between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m. daily. Outdoor skating rinks continue to have a limit of 25 skaters at a time and require reservations. 

HSR Updates: Essential Travel Only & Service on New Years Eve

The City is asking HSR customers to use the bus for essential travel only and to please save space on board the buses for essential workers and those who need to travel at this time.

As well, HSR will not be offering free or extended service for New Year’s Eve. We are encouraging you to stay at home with your immediate household. The safety of the community, and our employees is our number one priority. HSR will operate on a regular weekday schedule on Dec. 31.

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