Advocacy | Coronavirus | Ontario | Store Operations

Ontario retail can reopen Friday, June 11, 2021

June 7, 2021

Following pressure from RCC’s reopen retail campaign, Ontario announced that the phase 1 reopening would start early on 12:01am on Friday, June 11, 2021.

This means that province-wide, retail stores with an external facing entrance may open as of this coming Friday.

Under Phase 1 regulation – which has yet to be publicly posted – RCC understands retailers will have the following capacity restrictions:

  • Grocery and pharmacy stores remain open at 25% capacity (which, is calculated by dividing unincumbered sales floor by 16mor 172 sq ft);
  • Discount and big box stores selling grocery see an increase to 25% capacity, with the ability to sell all products (e.g. including products formally identified as “non-essential”);
  • Non-essential retail stores with an external facing entrance may reopen at 15% capacity (which, is calculated by dividing unincumbered sales floor by 26.67mor 287 sq ft), and;
  • Non-essential retail stores inside a mall (with no external entrance) remain closed.

If you’d like to calculate store occupancy, please use RCC’s updated store capacity calculator.

When originally announced, phase 2 was slated to begin 21 days after the start of Phase 1. That would see increased capacity limits, as well as all retailers – including those without external entrances – reopen around Friday, July 2, 2021.

Currently, it remains unclear if Ontario’s “work from home except where necessary” clause remains in place in phase 1. RCC will update members further as details become available. If lifted, removal of this clause would mean head office staff could be broadly recalled to workplace settings.

RCC continues to call for expedited move to phase 2

Despite data showing that COVID-19 cases are not prevalent in retail environment, Ontario is the only jurisdiction in North America which continues to keep retail doors locked to the public. RCC continues to lobby the Ontario government to reopen all retail – including those inside of malls – as soon as possible, along with an increase in capacity to 25%.

Click here to see RCC’s ongoing retail reopening campaign. We encourage your continued support – please sign the petition online and make use of the social media information. 

Pour en savoir plus, veuillez communiquer avec :

Sebastian Prins
Directeur, Relations gouvernementales (Ontario)
sprins@retailcouncil.org
416 467-3759

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