What the provincial stay-at-home order means to Oakville residents

Friday, January 22, 2021

The Government of Ontario has declared a second Provincial Emergency and issued a stay-at-home order with enhanced public health and workplace safety measures for all of Ontario. The order states that people must remain home “with exceptions for essential purposes, such as going to the grocery store or pharmacy, accessing health-care services, for exercise, or for work where the work cannot be done remotely.”

Review the Province of Ontario news release for details.

“Urgent action is required to help save lives and protect our health care system. The town is responding to the provincial order in every way possible to keep staff and residents safe while still providing our crucial services to the public. By following these measures, we can bend the curve downwards, in the direction Oakville and Ontario need to head,” said Mayor Rob Burton. “I urge you to please stay home as much as possible. Enjoy some exercise outdoors, but limit your interactions with others outside your household so that we can get through to when vaccinations are rolled out.”

Compared to the grey zone lockdown, which Oakville entered on December 26, closures have changed very little, however the town has implemented some new measures in response to the latest order. Here’s what the new restrictions mean to Oakville residents:

Oakville Transit is operating at a reduced service level, effective January 18, in response to the province-wide shutdown. Care-A-van will be providing service for essential trips only, which includes trips for medical appointments, pharmacy, grocery, banking and work. SPLIT Passes are still available for purchase at the Oakville Transit office and can be purchased with cash, debit or credit.

Outdoor organized public gatherings and social gatherings are further restricted to a limit of five people with limited exceptions. This is consistent with the rules during the lockdown during the first wave of COVID-19 in spring 2020 and allows individuals and families to enjoy time outdoors safely.

Town parks and trails remain open.

Weddings and funerals are the exception to the new gathering rule. Ten people can still be in attendance at a wedding or funeral service regardless of whether they are indoors or outside. Physical distancing and masking must be maintained. Gatherings at gravesides are limited to five people.

Capacity limits for recreational amenities do not fall under the same gathering restrictions of five people. Under the current measures, capacities for recreational amenities are established by a percentage of the size of the amenity.

In line with the order that people are allowed to go out for exercise, the town continues to offer a variety of opportunities for families, youth and adults to get outside and stay active while practising physical distancing. Five new outdoor skating rink locations will be added this year, weather and appropriate usage permitting, and select courts will be cleared of snow for pickleball and tennis. Team sports are not permitted and skating is not allowed on any ponds, streams and creeks for safety reasons.

All programs offered follow strict COVID-19 health and safety protocols. Residents are reminded to avoid close contact with others outside their household on and off the ice.

Review Halton Public Health’s guidelines for close contact.

Individuals are required to wear a mask or face covering in the indoor areas of businesses or organizations that are open. Wearing a mask or face covering is now recommended outdoors when you can't physically distance more than two metres.

The town strongly encourages residents to wear a mask while participating in outdoor activities, such as skating at rinks.

In November 2020, in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and concerns around parking availability, the town implemented a temporary paid on-street parking permit program for residents, to be rolled out in two phases. Phase 1 launched November 27 for residents north of QEW and south of Dundas Street. Phase 2 for residents South of QEW, launches this week. The permit allows residents to park their vehicles on the street for longer than three hours, or between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. It does not allow the vehicle to be parked against any other parking by-laws.

Residents can go online, self serve and get a confirmation email and permit in a few minutes, for $5 per day or $50 per 30-day period.

The town offers a wide variety of programs and services online. While the ServiceOakville counter at Town Hall is open for some services that are not online, residents are urged to not visit unless necessary. Please call ServiceOakville at 905-845-6601 or visit our COVID-19 Information page and check out the Find Town Services page.

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for regular updates.