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Ford to announce today plan for exiting Step 3, lifting more capacity limits

TORONTO – The vaccination passport, in the end, could be downgraded to a voluntary choice. There is great anticipation for Prime Minister Ford’s announcement tomorrow about the reopening plan that should further ease restrictions by taking Ontario out of phase 3. 

That a relaxation of capacity limits in commercial establishments where the green pass is required is being studied by the government has been confirmed by an internal source. What the government is about to put in place, according to the source, is a step-by-step approach that, provided that the province’s pandemic framework continues to improve, provides that the green pass becomes optional. “We are trying to get to a point where vaccination certificates will no longer be mandatory,” the well-informed source anticipated. Meanwhile, since today, the province’s app for smartphones designed to verify the proof of vaccination of residents is available.

Ontario has been in Phase 3 of the “reopening roadmap” since July: to block the gradual path towards the recovery of the economy was the increase in infections during the month of August.

Waiting with bated breath for Prime Minister Ford’s conference is in particular the catering sector that still has to observe a capacity limit of 50% and that in recent days has not hidden its frustration and its concern to the provincial government. Last Saturday Ontario lifted restrictions on the capacity of some large spaces, including those used for concerts, sports and movies but did not say a word about the restaurants that brought to their knees by Covid and ended the patio season, are in serious difficulty to make ends meet.

At the Canadian Federation of Independent Business and the Ontario Chamber of Commerce the exclusion did not go down: “We cannot understand why capacity limits can be lifted in those large premises, but not in small ones such as restaurants and gyms,” they said.

Details on what the path to the all-round recovery of the economy in the province will look like will be revealed tomorrow by Ford. As for personal protective equipment, it seems certain that masks in enclosed spaces will remain in force.

The trend of infections in Ontario in recent days seems to send positive signals: on Wednesday the 306 reported infections represented the lowest number of new cases since August, those of today were 407. As a result, the seven-day moving average of daily infections continues to decline, now standing at around 500, down from 565 the previous week.

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