Updated: Doug Ford orders all non-essential businesses to close by Wednesday

Adam Prudhomme

All non-essential services will be shut down across the province  just before midnight on Tuesday, by order of Ontario Premier Doug Ford.

The premier made the announcement just moments ago. A list of what is deemed essential and will be allowed to stay open will be released tomorrow.

The announcement came just hours after Lennox and Addington Warden and Greater Napanee Mayor Marg Isbester warned such a measure was possible as the number of positive COVID-19 cases continued to rise in Ontario.

Isbester said she’s already fielded several complaints from residents who have observed others not following the social distancing measures that have been put in place across the country. Though the town isn’t enforcing anything yet, that could change if the federal government instructs them to do so.

“Who would have ever have though we would ever be to that?” said Isbester. “Maybe that’s where we’re getting. I don’t want to see it. So many stores and so many people are trying to do their best.”

“It’s social distancing, washing your hands and not being so stupid and selfish,” added Isbester. 

In an address this morning, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau hinted strict rules could be coming if Canadians don’t take it upon themselves to try and slow the spread of the deadly virus.

“We will look at different measures that could be necessary to enforce these measures,” said Trudeau. “I can tell you that we haven’t taken anything off the table from the Emergencies Act, new and existing measures under the Quarantine Act.”

The government is asking that Canadian workers stay home unless they are providing an essential service, such as stocking grocery shelves, staffing pharmacies or working in health care. Anyone returning from abroad is required to remain in a two-week quarantine, not making one stop between the airport and their home.

This story has been updated to note that Doug Ford has officially order the provincial shut down 


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