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Ontario's Vaccine Certificates Are Coming Next Week & Here's Everything You Need To Know

As of September 22, Ontario vaccine certificates will officially come into effect across the province. This means that residents will need to show proof of vaccination to get into multiple establishments including restaurants and gyms.

We asked you on Instagram what you wanted to know about the new certificates and have answered all your questions below.

Where do I need to show my vaccine certificate?

The Ontario government announced that residents will need to be fully vaccinated for at least 14 days before being able to enter multiple indoor establishments.

These spaces include:

  • any indoor spaces for concerts, cinema, theatres
  • indoor restaurants, bars and other food establishments
  • indoor and outdoor spots with dancing like night clubs and restoclubs
  • indoor areas of horse racing tracks, car racing tracks
  • commercial film and tv studios with live audiences indoors
  • indoor waterparks
  • indoor sporting events with spectators
  • casinos, bingo halls, gaming establishments
  • indoor areas for sports and recreational fitness, including, personal fitness training
  • convention centres, banquet halls, conferences, and other meeting spaces
  • strip clubs, bathhouses and sex clubs.

However, spots like grocery stores, medical care locations and funeral and wedding services will not require you to show proof of vaccination. (Yet gatherings following weddings and funerals will require you to be vaccinated, such as receptions.)

Currently, there is a list of reasons why residents will not have to show proof of vaccination when heading into these settings, including using the washroom, paying for an order, making a retail purchase and more.

How do I get my vaccine certificate?

Starting on September 22, residents will have to show proof of vaccination, along with a piece of government ID (such as a driver's licence or passport) before entering an establishment where a vaccine certificate is required.

Right now, you can download a PDF of your proof of vaccination, which you can either print out or store on a device by visiting the Ontario booking portal.

The government states that "those who need support obtaining a copy of their vaccination receipt including those who do not have access to a computer or printer can call the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900."

However, by October 22, the government plans to release an app. Once it launches, residents will be able to download a QR code that they will then be able to use as their vaccine certificate.

How long will vaccine certificates last?

The Ontario government has stated that vaccine certificates are only a temporary measure. However, they do not give a timeline on how long they will be in place.

"How long they are necessary will be monitored and evaluated based on data and the advice of the Chief Medical Officer of Health," read a statement.

What do I do if I'm just visiting the province?

The Ontario government states that anyone who is visiting the province from another province or country will still be required to show their full vaccination status when entering listed establishments.

At the moment, the government is working to "provide additional tools to improve user experience, efficiency, and business supports in the coming weeks, including ensuring verification of fully vaccinated individuals from outside of province or country."

How will businesses enforce them?

All businesses and organizations will be required to ensure that customers provide proof of vaccination and an ID before entering the premises.

Businesses will have to ensure that the name and date of birth that is listed on the vaccination receipt is the same as that on the piece of identification.

On top of this, they will also have to verify that the customer's second dose was administered at least 14 days prior.

The Ontario government states that in the event that there is harassment or threats of violence over these new changes, law enforcement should be called to the business.

Individuals or businesses who do not follow these rules can be charged and fined under the Reopening Ontario Act.

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