Chatham-Kent remains in Red Zone

·2 min read

Don’t be surprised if Chatham-Kent remains in the “Red-Restrict” colour zone of the provinces COVID-19 framework for another week.

According to Dr. David Colby, the current number of cases within the region warrant Chatham-Kent to remain red.

“Our numbers are up but have plateaued,” said Colby.

According to the province, there are some slight changes to the rules in the red zone:

Organized public events, social gatherings and wedding, funeral and religious services, rites and ceremonies - limits for all organized public events and social gatherings will be restricted to five people indoors and 25 people outdoors. 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 be limited to 30 percent capacity of the room indoors and 100 people outdoors.

Restaurants, bars and other food and drink establishments will also have capacity limits. For dining indoors, restaurants will be limited to approximately 50 percent of the indoor dining area or 50 people. Additionally, establishments must be closed from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. and liquor can only be sold or served between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. No consumption of liquor will be permitted between 10 p.m. to 9 a.m. Dancing, singing, and the live performance of music are prohibited.

As for retail, there are capacity limits of 75 percent for supermarkets and other stores that primarily sell groceries, convenience stores and pharmacies. Additionally, there are capacity limits of 50 percent for all other retail, including discount and big-box retailers, liquor stores, hardware stores and garden centres.

As of Friday, March 26, Chatham-Kent had reported 97 active cases.

Outbreaks have been declared at one school, one place of worship and at a long-term care home.

As it stands, approximately 19,000 people have been vaccinated in Chatham-Kent. The group now includes people who are 70 years of age and older. Colby said 85 percent of this group had been vaccinated, which is above the 75 percent provincial projected average.

Colby said people from neighbouring jurisdictions would not be turned away from vaccine clinics, adding it is not about circling the wagons as the vaccines are coming from the province.

“People on the border are sometimes responsible for outbreaks here, “said Colby.

Bird Bouchard, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Ridgetown Independent News