The Northwestern Health Unit catchment area will move into "Yellow-Protect" in COVID-19 Response Framework as of 12:01 a.m. on Tuesday and no longer be subject to the stay at home order.

"The health and safety of Ontarians remains our number one priority. While we are cautiously and gradually transitioning some regions out of shutdown, with the risk of new variants this is not a reopening or a return to normal," said Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health in a prepared statement.

"Until vaccines are widely available, It remains critical that all individuals and families continue to adhere to public health measures and stay home as much as possible to protect themselves, their loved ones and their communities."

Gathering limites:

  • Limits for public events and social gathering, where physical distancing can be maintained, will return to: 10 people in doors and 25 people outdoors. This includes parties, dinners, gatherings, wedding receptions held in private residences, backyards or parks.


  • Limits for organized public events at staffed businesses and facilities, where physical distancing can be maintained, will return to: 50 people in doors and 100 people out doors.


  • Limits for religious services rites or ceremonies, including wedding services and funeral services, where physical distancing can be maintained (applies in any venue other than a private dwelling) will return to: 30% capacity of the room indoors and 100 people outdoors.


Some of the other restrictions include:

  • Some businesses now require a safety plan. This must be a written plan that includes things like screening employees, ensuring people maintain at least 2 metres between themselves, disinfecting surfaces and objects, and supporting hand hygiene. The Government of Ontario has a template to help employers create a safety plan.


  • Food establishments and bars must be closed between 12 a.m. and 5 a.m., and no more than six people can sit together.


  • Liquor can only be sold or served between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m. and cannot be consumed in establishments between 12 a.m. and 9 a.m.


  • Contact information must be collected from all patrons in settings such as restaurants, personal care service settings, meeting spaces, recreation facilities, and bingo halls.


  • Patrons of sports and recreational facilities must be at least 3 metres apart where there are weights/weight machines and in exercise classes. Programs are limited to 10 people per room inside and 25 people outside. Preregistration or appointments are required.


After returning to the Framework, the region will stay in their level for at least two weeks at which time, the government will assess the impact of public health and workplace safety measures to determine if the region should stay where they are or be moved to a different level.

The neighbouring Thunder Bay District Health has been moved into "Red-Control," the second highest level in the COVID-19 Response Framework. There are currently 121 active cases in the Thunder Bay District Health catchment area with three hospitalizations with one person in the ICU.

More information:

COVID-19 Response Framework: Keeping Ontario Safe and Open