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Ontario set to announce plans for Stage 3 of COVID reopening

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TORONTO - Premier Doug Ford is expected to announce plans for Stage 3 of Ontario's reopening today.

The development comes as the spread of COVID-19 continues to slow.

Most of Ontario entered Stage 2 of reopening on June 12, with another seven regions following on June 19.

Toronto, Peel and parts of Windsor-Essex were allowed to progress to Stage 2 five days later.

The remaining regions were in the second stage as of July 7, which included reopening patios and hair salons.

According to a document released in late April, Stage 3 includes allowing remaining workplaces to reopen “safely,” and further relaxing restrictions on public gatherings.

The document notes that large public gatherings such as concerts and sporting events will continue to be restricted.

But the president and CEO of the Ontario Hospital Association is already expressing some hesitations at the prospect of entering the third phase.

“Given that hospitals continue to act as the anchor of Ontario's response to COVID-19, (the OHA) will be giving this announcement some serious scrutiny,” Anthony Dale wrote on Twitter. “We can't have hallway healthcare in a pandemic.”

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