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Toronto, Peel to enter Stage 2, Windsor-Essex remains in Stage 1

‘We’re beating this virus,’ premier says


Premier Doug Ford no longer plans to balance the books by 2023-24 in light of the pandemic. (Premier of Ontario YouTube/Screengrab)

TORONTO — Ontario’s two largest regions will enter Stage 2 of the province’s reopening plan Wednesday, with restaurant patios, hair salons and swimming pools in Toronto and Peel Region able to resume operations.

That will leave Windsor-Essex as the only region of the province still in Stage 1, which Premier Doug Ford blamed on farmers in the region not allowing for enough testing of migrant workers, amid deadly outbreaks there.

“No one wants to see every region of Ontario open more than I do, but we have to do it right and unfortunately right now the threat of this virus in Windsor-Essex is still too great,” Ford said.

“While we’ve seen the trends improve in Toronto and Peel, we haven’t yet seen those targets met in Windsor.”

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Provincewide there were 161 new cases of COVID-19 reported Monday and three more deaths.

That’s the lowest total of new daily cases since late March and brings the province to a total of 33,637 cases, including 2,609 deaths and 28,933 resolved cases. The number of resolved cases continues to grow more quickly than active ones.

Province trending in right direction

The number of people in hospital with COVID-19 and those in intensive care and on ventilators all dropped, to the lowest levels since the province started publicly reporting them at the beginning of April.

“We’re beating this virus,” Ford said.

“Ontario is heading in the right direction because everyone is doing their part. We’re seeing the trends go the right way. We’re hitting our markers. We’re taking a cautious approach and this is helping Ontario move forward.”

On Monday, Peel reported 44 new cases, Toronto reported 36 and Windsor-Essex reported 32. The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit said that 31 of their 32 new cases today come from the agri-farm sector.

Two migrant workers have died in the region due to COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic and the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit is now reporting that a migrant worker in their area has died amid a farm outbreak there.

The farm currently has 199 infected migrant workers and 18 other people associated with the farm who tested positive for COVID-19, the health unit said.

Hundreds of migrant workers have tested positive for COVID-19 in outbreaks at farms in Windsor-Essex, Haldimand-Norfolk, and Chatham-Kent.