Only essential workplaces to remain open

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As of 11:59 p.m. ET on March 24, only businesses deemed essential workplaces will be allowed to remain open in Ontario during the COVID-19 crisis.

Grocery stores, pharmacies and pet and farm animal suppliers and veterinarians can continue as usual. Clothing stores, unless they sell work or protective clothing, must close.

Restaurants and bars must close, although restaurants can provide takeout or delivery.

And consumers won’t have to worry about the availability of beer, wine and spirits, or cannabis.

Among businesses that can remain open are: gas stations, transportation and heating fuel providers, hardware stores, motor vehicle dealerships and repair shops; hotels, motels, shared rental units; telecom providers and support services; transportation services, and mining operations and related services, and residential and commercial construction.

“While this was a difficult decision, we trust that Ontario’s business leaders will be able to promote safety while carrying out business and protecting jobs,” Premier Doug Ford said in a news release.

“The grocery store clerks, transit and hydro workers and truckers are out there on the front lines making sure the people of Ontario continue to have access to the products and services they need. It is essential that their workplaces be kept as safe as possible so these local heroes can return home to their families worry free.”

In the financial services sector: banks and credit unions, insurance offices, pension and benefits services are all deemed essential.

Many businesses, however, if possible, have arranged for employees to work from home. Major retailers have in some cases reduced hours.

Consumers and businesses can find the complete list of essential workplaces at ontario.ca.

 

 

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