Advocacy | Coronavirus | Ontario | Wins

All retail stores across Toronto and Peel Region can reopen on March 8

March 5, 2021

Following 102 consecutive days of closures for non-essential retailers in Toronto and Peel, Premier Ford announced a short while ago that both will be moved into the grey zone of the provincial framework when the two stay-at-home orders expire on Monday, March 8, 2021.  The Chief Medical Officers of Health for both regions announced earlier in the week that they were recommending the shift to grey to the province and so today’s news is most welcomed, but not surprising.  By way of a reminder, non-essential businesses are allowed to reopen their doors to customers at a reduced capacity of 25% in the grey zone of the framework.

Other changes include:

  • North Bay Parry Sound, Peterborough, Sudbury and Simcoe-Muskoka move into red zone (50% capacity limit).
  • Haldimand-Norfolk and Timiskaming move into the orange zone (100% capacity limit with a 2 meter social distancing requirement).
  • Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge and Renfrew County move into the yellow zone (100% capacity limit with a 2 meter social distancing requirement).

See RCC’s Store Capacity Calculator to calculate the in-store capacity for your zone.

Toronto also announced that a new order for workplaces in active outbreak will be implemented to include the following requirements: 

  • All persons within the business must wear a mask at all periods of time during the outbreak. 
  • Distancing and reduced capacity in shared spaces within the business must be adhered to.
  • Records of every person entering the workplace must be maintained.
  • Signage must be posted about physical distancing and hand washing.

Typically, regions have been in a colour zone for a period of two weeks before advancing.  This means that under a best-case scenario, Toronto and Peel could potentially move from the grey to the red zone on March 22, 2021.

RCC continues to advocate for the reopening of all retail at reduced capacities since merchants have clearly shown that they can reopen safely. Our discussions with elected officials and their members of staff are constant. Please watch and subscribe to our newsletter for ongoing updates or feel free to call upon us at any time.

For more information, contact Michelle Wasylyshen at

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