In his most sweeping effort yet to contain the ongoing outbreak of the coronavirus, Mayor John Tory has declared a State of Emergency in Toronto.
This move comes after provincial health officials reported 78 new COVID-19 cases, the largest single-day jump in Ontario so far, bringing the total to 503.
- Ford Orders all Non-Essential Businesses to Close for 14 Days
- TTC Ridership Down 60% as Torontonians Embrace Social Distancing
- Tracking Every Coronavirus Case in Toronto (MAP)
“We are declaring a state of emergency as part of the city’s ongoing efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19,” Tory said.
The move will ensure the municipal government can continue to act and respond quickly to the pandemic and any other events that arise in the weeks ahead.
“I know this is an incredibly tough time for residents across our city. I want them to know that we are doing everything we can at the City to fight this virus while continuing to deliver our essential and critical services,” Tory said.
We are declaring a State of Emergency as part of the City’s ongoing efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 and to ensure the municipal government can continue to act and respond quickly to the pandemic and any other events that arise in the weeks ahead. pic.twitter.com/xsjZQ4Pnf8
— John Tory (@JohnTory) March 23, 2020
Tory said he strongly recommends residents to continue taking every precaution in protecting themselves. “Stay home, stay safe, and only venture out to buy essential supplies once a week. Even better, order online when possible.”
The mayor added that he knows there are still many residents who continue to put their health and the health of the community at risk.
“We know the number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase in our city and that the next few days are absolutely critical in our ongoing efforts to slow down the spread of COVID-19,” said Tory.
The announcement comes after Tory received advice this morning from Toronto’s Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Eileen de Villa, which follows public health officials reporting the city’s first death from the virus Sunday afternoon and community spread of the virus.
This news comes on the same day that Premier Doug Ford announced the closure of all non-essential services in the province to shut down by 11:59 pm Tuesday.
As of March 23, Toronto has 220 confirmed cases, with 11 hospitalizations and one death as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
“It is a tragic reminder that we are confronting a deadly virus. That is why it is so important that we all continue to do everything we can to keep COVID-19 from continuing to spread,” said Tory.