Citing concerns over case numbers and Omicron, council extends Toronto's COVID-19 bylaws

Among the bylaws being extended: the city’s rules around masking, and the requirement that apartment buildings provide hand sanitizing stations and close common areas. 

Bylaws, including rules for masking, will remain on the books for 4 more months

'These bylaws are a temporary and necessary response,' said Mayor John Tory of council's decision to extend the rules into the spring. (Evan Mitsui/CBC)

Toronto's city council has decided to extend its COVID-19 bylaws until April 2022, citing increasing cases and hospitalizations in recent weeks. 

Among the bylaws being extended: the city's rules around masking, and the requirement that apartment buildings provide hand sanitizing stations, perform extra cleaning, and close common areas. 

Toronto's masking rules require everyone to wear masks in indoor public places like businesses, as well as in shared spaces like lobbies, elevators and stairwells in apartment buildings and condos. 

"As we confront the Omicron variant, we know from public health officials that making sure we are wearing our masks when around others indoors is even more important," wrote Mayor John Tory in a city news release. 

According to the same release, Toronto's Acting Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Na-Koshie Lamptey, recommended the bylaw extension based "on the current epidemiological trends." 

Ontario reported 1,808 new cases of COVID-19 today — the highest number of new cases since May 21. 

A new report from Public Health Ontario found that an estimated 80 per cent of all new cases on Dec. 13 were caused by Omicron. 



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