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Ontario Won't Consider Extending The Gathering Limit This Month After All

Sorry, those meet-ups will have to wait.
Ontario Won't Consider Extending The Gathering Limit This Month After All

If you made optimistic plans to meet up with all your best friends soon, we have some bad news. On Wednesday, May 20, Premier Doug Ford stressed it's too early to raise the maximum limit on Ontario gatherings from five to 10. Staff had suggested last week that they would make an announcement about allowing larger groups this week.

Ford was speaking alongside his Minister of Health Christine Elliott and his Transport Minister Caroline Mulroney on Wednesday.

There, the Premier insisted that it is just too soon to talk about allowing more people to get together.

"I know that everyone is asking 'when can we see our family, when can we see our friends, when can social gatherings begin again?'" Ford said.

"The Chief Medical Officer has been very clear, and the guidance on social gatherings remains the same: We can't have more than five people from outside your household right now."

As a result, Ontario won't consider raising the cap until at least Friday, May 29, when the latest extension of the provincial emergency order ends.

Assuming any measures approved that day would take effect on the first day of the following week, that leaves Monday, June 1 as the first possible date for larger gatherings.

Ford also stressed the need to keep following the "golden rule" of staying more than two metres apart.

Last week, Ontario's Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Williams stressed that he did not agree with Ford that Ontario is ready to begin gradually reopening.

And yesterday, on May 19, Dr. Williams said that "we are still in the process of reviewing and coming up with those recommendations," per CTV News.

He did suggest an announcement may be coming soon.

Meanwhile, also on Tuesday, Ford's big announcement had revolved around the cancellation of in-person classes for the remainder of the province's school year.

Wednesday's update announced 390 new provincial COVID-19 cases.

That's down from 427 the day before, but Ford also warned on Wednesday that if he sees a notable surge in cases, he will not be afraid to "roll back" some of the progress the province has made in recent weeks.

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