Stay-at-home order for Ontario

Only go out for essential purposes. Find out how the emergency order affects residents, businesses, and public spaces. Get details

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How to keep your employees safe and what to do if there’s a case in the workplace.

State of emergency declared in Ontario

The Ontario government has declared its second state of emergency, including a stay-at-home order that requires everyone to stay at home except for essential purposes.

Learn about the current measures and how they specifically impact businesses, organizations and facilities in Peel.

Peel Public Health issued a class order under Section 22 of the Health Protection and Promotion Act to owners of workplaces to exclude probable and confirmed cases of COVID-19 from the workplace, direct them to self-isolate and implement measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 within the workplace.

Find out how the class order affects your business.

Provincial measures during state of emergency

The Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development is focusing workplace inspections in areas of high transmission, including break rooms, and providing new educational materials to employers to promote safe behaviour before, during and after work.

The Ontario government is also providing COVID-19 tests and rapid testing in Ontario's most critical workplaces.

Learn more from the Government of Ontario.

Other information

Employers are required to understand and follow all requirements under the Occupational Health and Safety Act and the COVID-19 response framework. Refer to the guide to the Occupational Health and Safety Act to understand all of your health and safety rights and responsibilities.

Employers should create and implement a COVID-19 workplace safety plan that describes the measures and procedures put into place to make the workplace safer for everyone. Discuss and share your plan with everyone in the workplace.

Make sure your workplace safety plan includes the measures described below:

Health screening for employees and visitors

  • Screen employees and visitors to the workplace for symptoms before entering the workplace or at the start of a shift. Most people tend to ignore mild symptoms; however, most healthy young people only get mild symptoms, and they contribute to the spread of COVID-19 by not staying home and getting tested.
  • Online COVID-19 screening tools are available for workers and employees as well as customers and visitors.
  • Exclude from the workplace anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, anyone with signs or symptoms COVID-19, and anyone who is a close contact of a person diagnosed with COVID-19 or with symptoms of COVID-19.
  • If an employee develops symptoms while at work, they should go home right away and self-isolate and arrange to get tested.
  • Keep a log of all employees and visitors who enter the workplace, including for any in-person meetings or events. This will support contact tracing and must be provided to Peel Public Health upon request.
  • Display screening entry signs informing employees and visitors that they must not enter if they have symptoms.

Promote physical distancing

  • Adjust the workspace to create physical barriers or restructure physical settings between people to protect employees and visitors and ensure that 2 metres (6 feet) of space can be maintained.
  • Post physical distancing signs and install markers or directional arrows to ensure a 1-way flow of people.
  • Reduce crowding by ensuring non-essential visitors are not permitted on the premises and limit the number of people allowed within each room or space (e.g. employee lunchrooms, change rooms and washrooms).
  • When possible, employees should continue to work from home.
  • Inform employees from different households to avoid carpooling to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. If carpooling is the only source of transportation, follow Commute Ontario's carpooling guidance.

Encourage hand hygiene

  • Educate employees to maintain good hand hygiene.
  • Provide an adequate stock of hand hygiene supplies (e.g. liquid hand soaps, paper towel and hand sanitizers).

Enhance cleaning and disinfection

Masks and personal protective equipment (PPE)

  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) that provides protection of the eyes, nose and mouth, is required if a worker must come within 2 metres of another person who is not wearing a face covering, and is not separated by a plexiglass or some other impermeable barrier.
  • Provide employees with appropriate PPE including medical grade masks, if the work environment cannot always be adjusted to allow the required 2 meters distance.
  • Ensure masks are used correctly and consistently inside the workplace by all employees and visitors.
  • If you need PPE and other supplies to keep your employees and customers safe, access the workplace PPE supplier directory.
  • Learn about using masks in the workplace to help ensure you select the right type of masks for your employees.

Peel Public Health issued a class order under Section 22 of the Health Protection and Promotion Act to owners of workplaces to exclude probable and confirmed cases of COVID-19 from the workplace, direct them to self-isolate and implement measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19 within the workplace.

If an employee reports that they have COVID-19:

  • Immediately send them home if they are at work and support them to stay off work while they are self-isolating.
  • Review and follow your workplace safety plan and sector specific guidance.
  • Implement workplace safety measures to prevent further spread of COVID-19. These safety measures describe health screening for employees and visitors, physical distancing, hand hygiene, cleaning and disinfection and masks and personal protective equipment.

If only 1 employee is positive for COVID-19 in the workplace:

  • You're not required to report the positive case to Peel Public Health.
  • Public Health is notified of all positive COVID-19 cases and will contact the employee to gather information and provide next steps.
  • Public Health will provide instructions on notifying close contacts, including contacts in the workplace.
  • Close contacts of a COVID-19 case who have symptoms should get tested right away. Close contacts of a COVID-19 case who don't have symptoms must self-isolate immediately and get tested 5-7 days after their last exposure to the positive case.

Learn more about who is a close contact.

If 2 or more employees are positive for COVID-19 within a period of 14 days:

  • Notify Peel Public Health at 905-799-7700. Peel Public Health will support you to investigate and determine if there is an outbreak. A workplace outbreak may be declared if 2 or more cases could have reasonably become infected in the workplace within 14 days.
  • Notify the Ontario Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development in writing within 4 days if an employee has tested positive for COVID-19 due to an exposure at your workplace or if a claim has been filed with the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB).
  • Advise your workplace's joint health and safety committee, health and safety representative, and, if applicable, the worker's trade union.

Preparing for the call with Peel Public Health

Before you call Peel Public Health, gather the following information:

  • Contact information for the COVID-19 positive employees and their close contacts in the workplace.
  • Information about the workplace: sector, number of buildings and sites in Peel and Ontario, physical layout of the workplace and work areas (for example, processing, packaging, shipping and receiving, and numbered areas).
  • Information about the employees: total number of employees by work areas, type of employees (permanent, full and part time, agency, unionized, and management), schedules (shifts and rotations), external employees and visitors who enter the workplace (for example, contactors, agency employees, security, cleaners, and deliveries).
  • If applicable, information on employee housing and transportation to and from the workplace that is provided by the employer.

Return to work for employees who test positive for COVID-19

  • If someone tests positive for COVID-19, they are contacted by public health and instructed to self-isolate for at least 10 days.
  • Employees who test positive for COVID-19 do not require a negative test before returning to work.

Learn more about self-isolating.

Return to work for employees who test negative for COVID-19

  • A negative test does not automatically clear an individual to return to work. This depends on whether the employee had close contact with a person who has COVID-19.
  • Employees who had close contact with a person with COVID-19 must self-isolate for at least 14 days from their last date of exposure, even if they tested negative. This is because the virus may still be incubating and may not have been detected by the test.
  • Employees who test negative with no close contact to a person with COVID-19 should self-isolate until their symptoms are resolved for 24 hours. If they had no symptoms, they do not have to self-isolate and can return to work.

Access more information about when it's safe for an employee to return to work.

Peel Region is currently part of a Provincewide Shutdown. The Ontario government has introduced enhanced public health and safety measures. Understand how the current measures impact businesses in Peel.

For specific details about your business in the Provincewide Shutdown, review the following information.

Restaurants, bars and food or drink establishments

  • Indoor and outdoordining is not allowed (except in hospitals and airports).
  • Take-out, drive through, and delivery are permitted.
  • Alcohol can be sold between only 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. through take-out, drive through or delivery.
  • When lining up and/or entering a facility to pick up a take-out order, customers must wear a mask and stay 2 metres/6 feet away from other people not in their household.
  • A written safety plan is required outlining measures and controls put into place to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
  • Employees must wear masks whenever they cannot maintain physical distancing of 2 metres or 6 feet from other people.

Mobile food

  • Take-out, drive through, and delivery are permitted (but outdoor dining is not allowed).
  • Alcohol can be sold between only 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. (through take-out, drive through or delivery).
  • While picking up take-out orders, customers must wear a mask and stay 2 metres/6 feet away from other people not in their household.
  • A written safety plan is required outlining measures and controls put into place to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
  • Employees must wear a mask whenever they cannot maintain physical distancing of 2 metres/6 feet from other people.

Pools, spas and recreational water

  • All indoor public pools are closed including recreational water facilities in hotels, motels, campgrounds, golf courses, marinas and resorts.
  • Pools in condo buildings can remain open for residents from the same household.

Tattoos, piercing, tanning and salons

  • Personal service settings such as hairdressers, tattoo shops and tanning facilities are closed.
  • Regulated health professionals such as massage therapists can continue to operate.

Farmers' markets

  • Indoor farmers’ markets can operate only if they sell mainly food to the public and do not exceed 50% capacity.
  • Outdoor farmers’ markets (including holiday markets) can operate only if they sell mainly food to the public. Hours of operation can only be from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m
  • Sales can occur by browsing outdoor vendors’ booths, curbside pickup or delivery.
  • Before your market opens, contact Peel Public Health at 905-799-7700 for more details.
  • A written safety plan is required outlining measures and controls put into place to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

The Government of Ontario has developed sector-specific guidelines and posters to help protect workers, customers and the general public from COVID-19. For additional workplace-specific tip sheets and guidance, the Government of Canada has developed COVID-19 health and safety resources.

Workers, businesses and communities impacted by COVID-19 can receive financial support from the government. Learn about financial support and additional social support available.

Local business support

Businesses can also access local business support from their municipality:

New rebate available for businesses

The Ontario government is offering rebates to help with fixed costs, such as property taxes and energy bills for your business. Find out if your business is eligible.

Complaints about businesses that do not follow mandatory COVID-19 measures can be reported.

Beware of people who may be posing as inspectors in your premises. Any public health inspectors entering a business would:

  • Introduce themselves as inspectors from Peel Public Health or Ontario’s Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development.
  • Have a photo identification from Region of Peel or the Ministry.
  • Have a business card and leave contact information for the operator to follow up.

If you’re unsure whether an individual is a public health inspector, call Peel Public Health to confirm at 905-799-7700, or Caledon 905-584-2216.

If you’re concerned about suspicious behaviour, report this to local police.