‘I won’t hesitate to lock things down,’ Ford warns Ontarians not to make Easter plans

Ontario Premier Doug Ford is warning Ontarians not to make plans for Easter, saying he is “extremely concerned” about rising COVID-19 numbers.

By BT Toronto

Ontario Premier Doug Ford is warning Ontarians not to make plans for Easter, saying he is “extremely concerned” about rising COVID-19 numbers.

WATCH: https://toronto.citynews.ca/2021/03/30/ford-ontario-easter-covid-19/

“Everything is on the table right now, so folks, be prepared, I am asking you don’t make plans for Easter,” the premier said on Tuesday.

“I won’t hesitate to lock things down if we have to. I did it before, I’ll do it again.”

Ford also said the government has the “emergency brake” option and won’t hesitate to use it if necessary.

“That’s why we have the emergency brake available, which we’ve used a few times in different regions and we won’t hesitate to do it again,” he said.

The province started to reopen its economy earlier this month but implemented an “emergency brake” measure that would allow it to move regions into lockdown if cases spike.

Ford also hinted his government is considering additional restrictions to combat the surge in cases.

He did not specify what measures are being considered but said that any decision he has made has been in consultation with the province’s chief medical officer of health, Dr. David Williams.

Health Minister Christine Elliott said they are keeping a “very close eye on the situation.”

“We are in regular contact, daily contact with the local medical officers of health and with Dr. Williams and the public health measures table … if we need to take action and put on the emergency brake, we won’t hesitate to do that,” Elliott said.

The Ontario Hospital Association has said that intensive care units are seeing younger people, some with severe cases of COVID-19.

“I am extremely concerned on the situation we are seeing and the numbers going up. I am also very concerned about seeing the age group, the younger people, now in ICUs,” Ford said.

“Nothing is more important than our health … please, I am asking folks don’t make big huge plans with family members, that’s where the problem starts.”

Ontario reported more than 2,000 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday for the sixth day in a row, as the number of deaths and hospitalizations continued to rise.

The total number of patients being treated in hospital grew by 249 to 1,090. Of that total, 387 people are in the ICU and 249 are in the ICU on a ventilator.

With files from The Canadian Press

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