Province expected to announce four-week stay-at-home order

Media reports: stay at home order looms

Ontario is reporting 3,065 new cases of COVID-19 today and eight more deaths linked to the virus.

Premier Doug Ford is expected to make the announcement at a news conference this afternoon after hinting about new restrictions coming in a news conference Tuesday.

Non-essential retail outlets will be restricted to curbside pickup only and big-box stores will be restricted to essential aisles only.

"This variant is taking off", he said.

Meanwhile, vaccine appointments for Ontarians aged 60 and older opened in all of the province's public health units on Wednesday morning.

The province has not closed schools, but local public health chiefs in Toronto, Peel and Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph ordered all schools closed until at least April 19.

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Regions will be selected based on patterns of transmission, severe illness and mortality from COVID-19.

London has also not been included in a recent list of regions that will get more vaccine priority due to being in hot spots. The province will provide additional resources to support these mobile and pop-up clinics in the hardest-hit neighbourhoods. The number of COVID-19 hospitalizations in the province has increased by 28.2 per cent between the period of March 28 and April 5, 2021.

The areas are listed by postal code where COVID-19 has disproportionately affected certain neighbourhoods.

Move would close all non-essential businesses to in-person shopping, restrict non-essential sections of big box stores.

A stay-at-home was not issued at the time.

He says the new measures are necessary to fight the third wave of the pandemic that threatens to overwhelm the health-care system.

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