OTA Seeks Feedback on Peel-Toronto Notices to Shut Down Business with 5-Plus COVID Cases

The Region of Peel Public Health Department today issued a workplace notice closure (details provided below).

OTA has already reached out to the Region to clarify if the trucking industry will be exempt. The City of Toronto has also stated this afternoon they will be implementing a similar measure and may or may not consider exemptions. Again, OTA has reached out to the City of Toronto health officials regarding this order and its impact and application on the trucking sector.

OTA needs to understand how many members would be impacted by this decision announced by the two municipalities. Please let us know if the criteria highlighted in the announcement below would trigger an immediate closure of your facility. All names and information would be kept confidential.

OTA also needs to hear from all members with operations in Peel and City of Toronto. We need to understand how many employees you have and the sectors of the economy you serve (food/medicine/consumer goods). Also, if you have warehouse space that were to be closed for 10 days OTA needs to know what it would mean for your customer base/supply chain. All information will be kept confidential.

Please e-mail this information ASAP to geoffrey.wood@ontruck.org.

Peel Announcement:

Today, Peel Public Health will issue an updated Section 22 Order on workplaces (Class Order for Workplaces with COVID-19) that will direct all businesses with five or more cases of COVID-19 in the previous 14 days to close for 10 days where:

  • The cases could have reasonably acquired their infection at work, or
  • No obvious source of infection has been identified outside of the workplace.

With rapid and wider spread of variants as observed in our data, the updated Section 22 Order provisions are necessary to quickly stop spread, protect our healthcare system and save lives.

Workplace exposures in Peel Region continue to drive the region’s high case counts of COVID-19. Expedited closure will also allow Peel Public Health to investigate workplace exposures without risk of continued spread.

Peel Public Health strongly recommends that employers directed to close under this Order provide paid leave for impacted employees.

Businesses essential to the well-being of our community will be exempt from full closure. This includes healthcare, first responders, critical infrastructure, emergency childcare, education and others. The complete list is being developed and will be included in the Order.

The names of all affected businesses will be published on our web site while they are closed. This list will not be published until the first businesses affected are notified this week.

The updated provisions of the Section 22 Order will be in effect whenever Peel is in the Shutdown or Grey-Lockdown zones of the provincial framework.

Important details:

  • Closure will happen for businesses that have 5 cases that are identified to have been reasonably acquired in the workplace over a 14-day span or no obvious source of infection has been identified outside the workplace.
  • Closure will last 10 calendar days, with day 1 starting the day after the business is notified that they must close.
  • All affected employees must self-isolate. Employees who are isolating are not permitted to work in any other workplace. This further restricts spread should they have been exposed in their workplace.
  • Absent legislated paid sick days, employers required to close under these provisions are strongly recommended to provide paid leave for impacted employees.
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