GTA officials are asking for Doug Ford to exempt them from a move to the grey-lockdown zone, as COVID-19 cases continue to rise in southern Ontario.

Regional Chair of Durham Region John Henry, released a statement alongside eight other mayors of the region on Friday, asking to be consulted on the matter.

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Based on the numbers, Durham Region should remain in the red zone. We will continue to stand behind and support our front-line workers, who are truly #DurhamStrong.

Durham Region

The open letter states that while Durham's leaders trust the advice of the medical officer of health, they feel their region's needs are "vastly different" from other surrounding areas.

A factor that officials believe should give them the right to choose what is best for their residents and business owners, including remaining in the red zone.

Ford revealed on December 18 that nothing was "off the table" in terms of increased restrictions, ahead of a meeting with Ontario's top doctors.

The provincial government is reportedly considering a southern Ontario lockdown.

It is being speculated that the shutdown could start as early as December 26 and end on January 11.

However, it is unlikely that an announcement will be made before Monday.

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