Infectious Diseases

Algoma Public Health

Northern MOH's Letter of Instruction

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Update: February 18, 2022 - Algoma Public health rescinds Letters of Instructions in light of new provincial measures

Following an announcement by the Ontario government that the province will be moving forward with the easing of public health measures and potential lifting of mandatory proof of vaccine requirements, Algoma Public Health has rescinded the previously issued Letter of Instruction below as of Friday, February 18th, 2022 at 12:01 am.

Learn more about the current public health measures that have been put in place by the province.

  

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To: Persons responsible for Facilities located in Algoma Public Health's jurisdiction where organized sports are played and/or practiced indoors

 

Objet: Propriétaires et exploitants d’installations situées sur le territoire de Santé publique Algoma et où des sports organisés sont pratiqués à l’intérieur

 

Re: Public Health Instructions for Owners/Operators 

 

 

Revised: November 15, 2021

 

Issued: September 29, 2021

Date de publication : le 29 septembre 2021

 

Effective: October 14, 2021

Date d’entrée en vigueur : le 14 octobre 2021, à 0 h 1

 

Download (ENG):

 

Download (FR):


This Letter of Instructions amends and replace my earlier Instructions issued September 29, 2021 and effective October 14, 2021  

 

I am writing to notify owners, operators and permit holders for the above Facilities of your responsibilities.

 

I also wish to thank you for your ongoing support throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to help protect the health of area residents. It is through our collective efforts that we will keep our communities safe. The fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic is upon us, with the highly transmissible Delta variant being the dominant variant in COVID-19 cases. Ontario’s Science Advisory and Modelling Consensus Tables advise that the Delta Variant is twice as transmissible than the original SARS-CoV-2 virus. Daily COVID-19 case counts in Ontario are substantial, with provincial data showing over 3,444 new cases reported to public health during the period of November 3 to November 9, 2021, with a rate of 23.3 per 100,000 population.

 

7-day rates of new cases in Algoma during the month of November, 2021 have risen sharply from about 30 cases per 100,000 people to over 121.5 cases per 100,000 people, which is the highest COVID-19 activity since the beginning of the pandemic. Transmission has occurred in Algoma’s sport and recreational settings. In a recent 7-day period, about 9% of Algoma’s COVID-19 infections have been in people aged 0 to 19.

Activities related to Organized Sport(s) have the potential to enhance COVID-19 transmission. Specifically, close contact, forceful exhalation, prolonged exposure crowded indoor spaces and masks and face coverings removed during physical activity contribute to enhanced likelihood of COVID-19 transmission. These risks for enhanced transmission are combined with the risk of increased spread within and between communities given the composition of Organized Sport(s) teams and their associated travel. Verifying proof of vaccination for persons 12 years and older in the Facilities noted above, in accordance with this Letter of Instructions, will strengthen protections for communities within the Algoma Public Health service area by helping curb the spread of COVID-19.

 

These instructions are being provided pursuant to Section 2(2.1) of Schedule 1 to Ontario Regulation 364/20: Rules for Areas at Step 3 And At The Roadmap Exit Step made under the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020, S.O. 2020, c. 17 (the “Reopening Ontario Act”), formerly a regulation made under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and now a continued section 7.0.2 order under the Reopening Ontario Act.  As required by regulation, these instructions are issued following consultation with the Office of the Chief Medical Officer of Health.

 

Where this Letter of Instructions imposes additional requirements not set out in the Reopening Ontario Act, the requirements under this Letter of Instructions must be followed.

 

I may amend these instructions (if and as required) and will rescind them as soon as I determine they are no longer necessary.


 These instructions remain in effect until further amended or rescinded by me.

 

PLEASE FOLLOW ALL INSTRUCTIONS CLOSELY

 

Effective 12:01 a.m. on November 19, 2021 and until further notice unless otherwise specified, I am instructing all persons responsible for Facilities where Organized Sport(s) are played and/or practiced (including owners, operators and permit holders) to:

 

1. Require each person, age 12 and older, at the point of entry, who attends the indoor area of the Facility for the purpose of (a) actively playing or otherwise participating directly in Organized Sport(s); (b) coaching, officiating or volunteering in Organized Sport(s); or (c) spectating at Organized Sport(s) to provide identification and proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or a valid medical exemption.

 

All children shall be offered a “grace period” of 12 weeks from their 12th birthday during which they must provide identification in accordance with these Instructions but are relieved of the requirement to provide proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19, to allow a reasonable opportunity for this to be completed. 

 

2. Comply with all other requirements under the Reopening Ontario Act and its regulations that apply to the Facility.


DEFINITIONS

 

For the purpose of these Instructions

 

Facility” means a facility located in the District of Algoma Health Unit where Organized Sport(s) are played and/or practiced.

 

Fully Vaccinated” is defined within Section 2.1(5) of Schedule 1 to Ontario Regulation 364/20: Rules for Areas at Step 3 And At The Roadmap Exit Step made under the Reopening Ontario Act.

 

Owner/Operator” means an owner/operator of a facility located in the District of Algoma Health Unit where organized sports are played and/or practiced.

 

Organized Sport(s)” means organized sport(s) and recreational fitness activities including, but not limited to, sports leagues, organized pick-up sports, dance classes, gymnastics, marital arts and swimming classes, or as otherwise described in the Ministry of Health’s Proof of Vaccination Guidance for Businesses and Organizations under the Reopening Ontario Act including all related training, practices, games, and competitions.

 

ENFORCEMENT

 

These instructions will be enforced by public health officials and by provincial offences officers under one or more of the Health Protection and Promotion Act (sections 100, 101 and 102), the Reopening Ontario Act (sections 9, 9.1, 10 and 10.1) and/or the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (sections 7.0.5 and 7.0.11).  Failure to comply with these instructions is an offence.  Among the enforcement actions that may be taken, you may be charged, and penalties imposed including significant fines, imprisonment and/or closure of premises.

 

A failure to comply with regulations issued under the Reopening Ontario Act is an offence punishable by set fines of $750 for individuals and $1,000 for corporations under Part I of the Provincial Offences Act.  Maximum penalties for this offence if prosecuted under Part III of the Provincial Offences Act include: for individuals, a fine of up to $100,000 and imprisonment for not more than one year; for an individual who is an officer or director of a corporation, a fine of up to $500,000 and imprisonment for not more than one year; and for a corporation, a fine of up to $10,000,000.  A person is guilty of a separate offence on each day that the offence occurs or continues.

 

Inquiries about these instructions should be directed to Algoma Public Health at healthyworkplaces@algomapublichealth.com.  

 

Sincerely,

 

 

Dr. Jennifer Loo, MD MSc CCFP FRCPC

Medical Officer of Health

District of Algoma Health Unit

 

 

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) (Foire aux questions)

 

  

 

 

Workplace or Business Regulation Questions

 

 

Questions sur la réglementation des lieux de travail et des entreprises

 

 

 

 

Algoma Public Health Business Resources

 

Healthy Workplaces E-mail: healthyworkplaces@algomapublichealth.com

Healthy Workplaces Phone Line: 705-942-4646 ext. 3273 or 1-866-892-0172

 

Ressources pour les entreprises de Santé publique Algoma

 

 

 

 

 

Guidance Documents to Support Businesses and Organizations with Proof of Vaccination

 

 

Documents d’orientation visant à appuyer les entreprises et les organismes avec la preuve de vaccination