Last updated: August 8, 2020 at 11:34 a.m.
The response to the current COVID-19 pandemic around the world has been dynamic and based on the best advice from public health experts. New legislation and bylaws have been put in place which have not existed in the past.
Mayor John Tory signed an emergency order No. 1 (April 2) and emergency order No. 2 (April 3) regulating physical distancing in City of Toronto parks and public squares. The temporary amendments to Municipal Code Chapter 608, Parks, and Chapter 636, Public Squares required by these two emergency orders were implemented by By-law 322-2020, and By-law 323-2020. City Council have extended the expiry of these temporary amendments to physical distancing in City of Toronto parks and public squares, to at 12:01 a.m. on the first day after the completion of the first Council meeting following summer recess (currently scheduled for September 30 and October 1, 2020), unless extended by Council (By-law 666-2020).
On April 1, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health issued a Class Order:
Anyone over the age of 70, as the Province announced, is strongly encouraged to stay home as much as possible.
Toronto City Council approved a temporary by-law that requires masks or face coverings be worn in common areas in apartments and condominiums through temporary provisions under Toronto Municipal Code, Chapter 545, Licensing.
Under the new by-law, building owners or operators are required to have a policy to ensure masks or face coverings are worn by individuals in enclosed common spaces, such as lobbies, elevators and laundry rooms, and post corresponding signage.
Building owners or operators should also provide hand sanitizer in common areas, keep non-essential common areas closed and clean frequently-touched surfaces.
Visit the RentSafeTO for Building Owner page for full details.
To protect the health, safety and well-being of our communities, Toronto City Council voted unanimously in favour of a temporary by-law requiring operators of premises to establish policies requiring masks or face coverings be worn in all enclosed public places as of July 7 to help stop the spread of COVID-19. On July 29, Toronto City Council approved an amendment to the temporary by-law requiring, in addition, masks or face coverings be worn in common areas in apartments and condominiums.
Read about the mandatory mask or face covering by-law.
These measures heed advice from the Medical Officer of Health, that City Council use its authority to legislate for the protection of the health, safety and well-being of persons in Toronto to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by requiring businesses and other facilities that are open to the public as well as apartments and condos to have a policy that ensures masks or face coverings are worn in the enclosed spaces under their control.
This temporary by-law will expire at 12:01 a.m. on the first day after the completion of the first Council meeting following summer recess (currently scheduled for September 30 and October 1, 2020), unless extended by Council.
For more information, read Toronto Public Health’s guidance for restaurants, bars and other food services premises.
A COVID-19 Enforcement Team will enforce:
Fines for violating a provincial order under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act or the Reopening Ontario Act, 2020 can range from $750 to $100,000, including up to one year in jail and $10,000,000 for a corporation.
The enforcement team will be responding to complaints and proactively patrolling, in an effort to ensure public understanding of orders and bylaws.
If you feel that you were wrongly ticketed, you have the option of requesting an early resolution meeting with a prosecutor and challenging it in court. You can do this by:
All of the required Provincial Offences Act court forms are available on the City’s website. Completed forms can be emailed to POACourt@toronto.ca or mailed to the address indicated on the back of the ticket.
Once the trial date is scheduled, you will receive a notice by mail of the time and place for your trial. The Court will conduct a trial to decide whether you committed the offence that gave rise to the ticket being issued.