Despite the big spike in new COVID cases that saw Ontario hit 700 new cases overnight—the largest number since the pandemic began—Ontario officials are not moving quickly to clamp down with restrictions. Last week the government sharply reduced the number of people that can congregate indoors at casual gatherings (10) and outdoors (25). The government also ordered early closing of bars and the total closure of strip clubs. The effects of those enhanced restrictions won’t show up in the daily reporting for a week or more, and officials are taking a wait and see approach before imposing further measures.
Dr. David Williams pointed out that the high number of new cases are also accompanied by testing numbers that exceed 40,000 and are predicted to hit 50,000 tests per day. That means that even with 700 new cases the positivity rate in Ontario is 1.7 percent today compared to 6.2 percent back in April when the government was struggling to ramp up testing. He told reporters that he is relying on the Medical Officers of Health in the local regions to advise him on any enhanced measures that may be required. He also said that most of the spread of the virus is entirely due to human interaction—mainly people taking part in gatherings without following COVID procedures.
Education Minister Lecce insisted that despite some scattered breakouts in schools, the province is doing everything it can to keep the education system running because of the negative impact further prolonged isolation would have on children and teens.
Premier Ford was asked to comment on the large car rally in Wasaga Beach that forced police from several jurisdictions to seal off the town to outsiders.