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COVID-19 Update: Updates from the City of Hamilton

HAMILTON, ON – Earlier today, Mayor Fred Eisenberger joined Dr. Elizabeth Richardson, Medical Officer of Health, and the City’s Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) Director, Paul Johnson to update media and the community on the City’s response to COVID-19.

As of 9 am this morning, there are 640 confirmed positive cases, 7 probable cases, and 32 deaths from COVID-19 in Hamilton. More details about cases are available on the City’s website including demographics, risk factors, exposure, etc.

“Hamilton Reopens” – NEW for May 25

Community Heat Response
Today, the City announced that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is launching a modified Community Heat Response to support residents during heat events declared by the City’s Medical Officer of Health. Staff have been working with partnering community agencies to coordinate cool places for the public during heat events, and these locations can be identified by a “Cool Down Here” sign at the entrance. Today, the City opened six City recreation facilities to serve as cool places, and Hamilton Central Library opened as a cool place as well. All facilities are open for cool place access only. A few other library locations will also come online over the next few days to serve as cool places.

The locations were selected to best serve broader community need and allowed for the implementation of public health measures such as physical distancing and screening. Those attending cool places are also asked to wear a face covering or mask if possible.

Under provincial orders, spray pads and indoor and outdoor pools remain closed.

For up to date information on the City’s heat response, cool place locations/addresses, and tips on coping with the heat, visit

Outdoor Recreational Amenities
Last week, the provincial government announced it is permitting the reopening of some outdoor recreational amenities including outdoor sports facilities and multi-use fields, outdoor picnic sites, benches and shelters in parks and recreational areas, etc. The City’s Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) is reviewing what is required for the safe reopening of these amenities, and we will share more as soon as possible. In the meantime, these sites and amenities remain closed, as do escarpment stairs, the City’s decorative and drinking fountains, etc.

Other Reminders

National Paramedics Week
This year, May 24 to 30 is National Paramedics Week. The theme this year is Pandemic: Paramedics on the Front Line, which speaks to the important role that paramedics play on the front lines of the healthcare system during a pandemic. The City would like to thank all of our paramedics for their ongoing hard work and dedication to serving the residents of Hamilton in their time of need.

Regular Leaf and Yard Waste collection resumes today
The City started regular weekly leaf and yard waste collection today. There is no change to the schedule that was in place, pre-COVID-19 – leaf and yard waste will be collected on residents’ regularly scheduled waste collection day.

City Waterfalls Remain Closed
Waterfall and escarpment areas remain closed to all users. These are particularly difficult to physically distance in as their natural features and limitations mean that the trail systems are narrow. Further, there are natural gathering areas such as lookouts and trail head entrances that encourage gathering.

The areas that remain closed include: Crooks Hollow, Spencer Gorge, Dundas Peak, Spencer Adventure Trail, Tew Falls, Webster Falls, Tiffany Falls, Devil's Punchbowl. Members of the public are not permitted on any of these areas or trails and those who access these properties are trespassing.

Municipal By-law Enforcement (MLE) staff will be patrolling to enforce parking restrictions and trespassers may be fined. Parking tickets in Special Enforcement Areas carry a $250 fine. MLE continues to enforce the EMCPA for groups larger than five (5), which carries a fine of $880. Parking violations can be reported to Municipal Bylaw by calling 905-540-6000.

Public Health officials advise wearing face coverings
Public health officials began recommending this week that the public wear face masks when going out to run errands, attend medical appointments, taking transit, etc.

HSR is strongly encouraging customers to consider wearing a face covering when using public transit. It is not mandatory but can help protect others in spaces where physical distancing can be hard to maintain.

The City wants to remind customers that transit continues to be for essential travel only. Operators are committed to providing a safe, reliable and professional service and will do their best to limit instances of over-crowding by monitoring the boardings of 10 or 15 customers the best they can, while safely operating buses. The public is reminded to adhere to the public health measures that have been put in place.

Announcements from other levels of government

The federal government today announced applications are now being accepted for Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) for small businesses. Over the course of the program, property owners will reduce rent by at least 75 per cent for the months of April and May (retroactive), and June, for their small business tenants. CECRA will cover 50 per cent of the rent, with the tenant paying up to 25 per cent and the property owner forgiving at least 25 per cent.

“As we gradually re-open our community and our economy, we have to remember to stay the course. That means physical distancing, hand washing, wearing a non-medical face mask where maintaining a physical distance from others is difficult and not gathering in groups of five or more people from outside your household. Be mindful that the virus is still out there. Together, we must stay the course to protect our community, frontline workers and each other.”

Mayor Fred Eisenberger

Additional Resources

Jasmine Graham
Senior Communications Officer
City of Hamilton
[email protected]

Michelle Shantz
Communications and Media Advisor
Office of Mayor Fred Eisenberger
[email protected]