News Release
September 21, 2020

The City of Toronto continues to respond to COVID-19. Today, Mayor John Tory, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Eileen de Villa, and Fire Chief and General Manager of the Office of Emergency Management Matthew Pegg provided an update on the City’s response and recovery and rebuild progress.

There are 17,712 cases of COVID-19 in the city, an increase of 184 today. There are 33 people hospitalized. In total, 15,382 people have recovered from COVID-19. To date, there have been 1,178 COVID-19 deaths in Toronto. Torontonians should expect case counts to rise over the next few weeks. Residents need to act to limit case count increases through a combination of self-protection steps including watching your distance, wearing a mask and washing your hands. Everyone should limit contact with people they don’t live with as much as they can. Case status data can be found on the City’s reporting platform.

The City’s COVID-19 enforcement team continues to respond to complaints and enforce orders and bylaws across the city, including in bars, restaurants and parks. Last week, the Province of Ontario amended orders under the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act. The maximum number of people permitted to attend social gatherings and organized public events in Ontario – including parties and dinners – is now 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors. While most residents and businesses have complied with provincial regulations and the City’s mandatory mask or face covering and physical distancing bylaws, a small number of others have not.

Today, Chief Pegg provided an update on City enforcement actions. The City has taken 1,408 formal enforcement actions in response to COVID-19. Enforcement requires investigation, the gathering of facts, and the application of often complicated legal processes. Enforcement officers are out across the city on patrol at all times and respond to complaints, which are expected to increase. This weekend, the City received 21 complaints related to gatherings. The investigations into these specific complaints did not result in formal enforcement action. Formal enforcement action – like ticketing and serving notices – requires an officer witnessing an infraction or obtaining evidence that gives reasonable and probable grounds to believe an offence occurred.

Enforcement of COVID-19-related orders and bylaws is complicated work. A number of groups including Police, Municipal Law Enforcement Officers and Toronto Public Health Enforcement Officers work together with the primary goals of saving lives, reducing the transmission of COVID-19, and helping prevent the virus from overwhelming our healthcare system. Chief Pegg is working closely with Police Chief James Ramer and City’s COVID-19 Strategic Command Team to streamline response processes for complaints and provide an increasingly focused and robust enforcement response.

The City’s website is updated daily with the latest health advice and information about City services, social supports and economic recovery measures. Check for answers to common questions before contacting the Toronto Public Health COVID-19 Hotline or 311.

Toronto is home to more than 2.9 million people whose diversity and experiences make this great city Canada’s leading economic engine and one of the world’s most diverse and livable cities. As the fourth largest city in North America, Toronto is a global leader in technology, finance, film, music, culture and innovation, and consistently places at the top of international rankings due to investments championed by its government, residents and businesses. For more information visit the City’s website or follow us on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook.

Media Relations