Dear Friends and Neighbours,
Today we received the news that the City of Toronto will cancel all mass participation events until June 30. This means that my Environment Day which was scheduled for April 4 at Eglinton Flats is cancelled until further notice, but also some of the City’s largest festivals including the Pride Parade will unfortunately be postponed or cancelled this year. As it currently stands, it is uncertain whether our annual Canada Day celebrations at Amesbury Park and Weston Lions Park can proceed this year.
We also heard from the Province today that schools will be closed until at least May 1. The next few weeks will continue to be a challenge for many of us, and I’d like to remind everyone that if you need help finding financial assistance, mental health support, employment support, childcare, housing, food, clothing and shelter, you can visit 211central.ca, call 211 or text 21166. My office also remains open to assist you by phone or email.
It is incredibly important for everyone to do their part and practice physical distancing by staying at home as much as possible so that we can get back to our regular lives sooner rather than later.
Here's the key information you need to know today:
Cancellation of mass events through to June 30
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the City of Toronto will cancel all mass participation events through to June 30. This includes City-led major mass participation events, festivals, conferences and cultural programs, as well as all City permits for major mass participation events organized by external groups at civic centres and squares, parks, public spaces, City-operated museums and cultural centres. This decision was made in consultation with major event organizers and supports the directive that physical distancing is critical to stopping the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
Childcare centres open today
The City of Toronto opened four emergency licensed child centres today for the children of eligible, essential and critical service workers. As announced last week, Toronto is the first municipality to open emergency child care centres that will operate, as the need demands, on a 24 hours per day, seven days per week basis to support critical, frontline workers. As of this morning, approximately 487 families, representing more than 705 children, have applied.
As noted yesterday, it’s important to remember:
Parks are only open for walking, cycling and running. Amenities in parks or congregating in groups is not permitted. Starting today, March 30, City staff together with the Toronto Police Service are prioritizing the patrol of hot spot parks. While education is the first line of enforcement, the fines range between $750 to a maximum of $5,000. City staff are re-installing signage, locks and caution tape at parks where these have been removed. Additionally, The City’s Parks Ambassadors have begun a downtown hot spot education blitz and electronic portable signs will display messages near some busy parks. More information is available on the City’s website.