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Capacity limits extended again for higher-risk settings

It affects nightclubs, strip clubs
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Miriam King/BradfordToday

Capacity limits at higher-risk settings will be in place for a little longer.

Today, Ontario announced it's extending its pause on the lifting of capacity limits for higher-risk settings requiring proof of vaccination. The affected businesses are night clubs or other places with dance facilities, strip clubs. sex clubs and bathhouses. The announcement does not say how long the pause is for.

Limits for these locations were originally slated to lift on Nov. 15, however, the government paused that on Nov. 10

Daily COVID-19 cases in the province have been increasing recently. Today, 928 new cases were reported. There are also 21 confirmed cases of the omicron variant.

In a news release, Minister of Health Christine Elliott said the province is "continuing to take a deliberate pause in reopening to protect our hard-fought progress against COVID-19."

“While an increase in the number of cases was always expected as we entered the winter months, with the emergence of the omicron variant we must continue following the measures we have in place that have been working for us,” said Dr. Kieran Moore, Chief Medical Officer of Health, in a news release.

“Over the coming weeks and months, we need to stay the course on reaching those who have not yet been vaccinated. If you have not yet received the vaccine, please do so today and if you are eligible for a booster dose, please book your appointment to provide yourself with an extra layer of protection. Achieving the highest vaccination rates possible remains our best defence against COVID-19 and variants.”

On Oct. 25, the province lifted capacity limits where proof of vaccination is required in restaurants, sports and recreational facilities, casinos, bingo halls, and meeting and event spaces. If museums, religious services, tour and guide services, and personal care services required patrons, customers and clients to show proof of vaccination, capacity limits were also lifted for those establishments. 

According to the Ontario reopening plan, vaccine certificate requirements could start to lift in January, unless there are "concerning trends" related to COVID-19 spread in the province.

Moore is giving a COVID-19 update today at 1:30 p.m. The Ontario Science Table also released new COVID-19 modelling this morning.