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City of Hamilton moves to the Grey -Lockdown category in the provincial COVID-19 Response Framework

HAMILTON, ON – After carefully reviewing the local COVID-19 data and trends over the past week, today, following discussions with Dr. Elizabeth Richardson, the Medical Officer of Health for the City of Hamilton, Premier Doug Ford announced that Hamilton will move into the Grey – Lockdown category within the Provincial COVID-19 Response Framework as of Monday, December 21, 2020 at 12:01 am.

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

In Hamilton, the latest weekly rate of new cases per 100,000 population reported is 116.  The average number of cases (7-day moving average) reported per day is 98. The percent positivity among tests has also risen again to 3.9%. 

Moving into the Grey – Lockdown category also includes a number of closures and restrictions for municipal services. These include:

  • 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.
  • City Hall and all Municipal Service Centres are closed to walk-ins. Appointments are required for in-person transactions, active health screening will be required.
  • Make an appointment at 905-546-CITY (2489)
  • Residents are encouraged to access municipal services online where available: www.hamilton.ca/coronavirus/online-city-services
  • Marriage ceremonies are unavailable. Marriage licenses are available by appointment only.
  • The Provincial Offences Administration Office is closed to walk-ins. Appointments are required for in-person transactions, active health screening will be required. Make an appointment at 905-546-CITY (2489).
  • Animal Services service counter is closed to walk-ins. Appointments are required for in-person transactions.
  • Licensing service counter at 77 James St. N. (open Wednesdays only) is closed to walk-ins. Appointments are required for in-person transactions.

As per the Province’s COVID-19 Response Framework, under the Grey – Lockdown category:

  • 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, 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.

Categories in the Provincial COVID-19 Framework and changes for the city of Hamilton can be found in the Keeping Ontario Safe and Open Framework. Changes impacting local public places will be updated on our website shortly at www.hamilton.ca/publicplaces.

Locally, the Reopening Ontario Act will continue to be assertively enforced by the City’s COVID Enforcement Team. As the city enters the Grey – Lockdown category, the COVID Enforcement Team will be responding to complaints as well as proactively enforcing all the applicable regulations throughout the city.

In addition to the Framework restrictions, members of the public are advised of the following:

  • Trips outside of the home should only be for essential reasons (work, school, groceries/pharmacy, health care, assisting vulnerable individuals or exercise and physical activity).
  • Virtual gatherings or events are the safest way to visit or recognize occasions with people outside your household.
  • Work remotely, where possible.
  • 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.

“Hamilton’s move to the lockdown stage is an unfortunate but necessary measure in order to protect the health and well-being of everyone in our community. We are experiencing a surge in COVID-19 cases and additional restrictions need to be implemented to help lower the spread of this virus. This was a tough decision made by the province. We must take the steps required to protect our hospitals, long-term care and retirement homes, and every person in this city.”- Mayor Fred Eisenberger

“The decision to move the City of Hamilton into the Grey – Lockdown category wasn’t an easy one, but a necessary one. We will continue to work with our local congregate care and healthcare facilities, workplaces and essential businesses to reduce the number and severity of outbreaks and reduce transmission in the community. As always, I want to thank the residents of Hamilton for their nimbleness and cooperation.” – Dr. Elizabeth Richardson, Medical Officer of Health

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