Stricter public health measures in two Ontario regions as vaccine push continues

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Stricter public health measures come into force in two Ontario regions today as the province continues ramping up its vaccine drive.

Hamilton is going into the strictest grey-lockdown phase of Ontario’s pandemic response plan today, while the Eastern Ontario Health Unit enters the second-strictest red zone.

But as of today, those who live in grey zones will be able to attend fitness classes outdoors.

Premier Doug Ford made that announcement Friday, when he also revealed that hair salons and other personal care services will be able to reopen in grey zones on April 12.

Meanwhile, the government lowered the minimum age for vaccine eligibility in 10 more public health units last night, from 75 down to 70.

It also announced that people aged 70 and older in York Region, who had previously only been able to book vaccines through the regional service, can now use the provincial system to make appointments.

Also in York Region, a drive-thru vaccination site opens at Canada’s Wonderland today.

A limited number of patients will be able to get vaccines at the Vaughan, Ont., theme park by appointment only.

Two more mass vaccination sites will also open in Toronto, where people as young as 70 started getting vaccinated on Saturday.

But the city is also grappling with COVID-19 outbreaks that have forced Toronto Public Health to shutter three schools.

The Toronto District School Board says it’s moving students at Brian Public School and Victoria Village Public School to online learning for the time being.

And the Toronto Catholic District School Board has temporarily closed St. Dominic Savio Catholic School.

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