Ontario lifts proof of vaccine system, remaining capacity limits in all indoor settings

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Proof of COVID-19 vaccination is no longer required starting today at most Ontario restaurants, gyms and movie theatres, while nightclubs, sporting and concert venues can get rid of capacity limits and restrictions lift on social gathering sizes.

Ontario is ending most of its major COVID-19 public health measures on Tuesday, though Premier Doug Ford has said mask mandates will likely be in place for at least a couple more weeks.

COVID-19 hospitalizations and test positivity rates have fallen sharply from the January peak of the Omicron wave, though wastewater data suggests cases may be starting to rise again.

Ford says that the vaccine certificate system was always intended to be time-limited, and he is only now removing it due to the advice of the chief medical officer of health, but people should still exercise caution because the pandemic isn’t over.

Venues that still had capacity limits in place, including sports arenas, concert venues, theatres, nightclubs, and restaurants where there is dancing, can now scrap those restrictions.

As well, settings where capacity had been limited to the number of people who could maintain two metres of distance – including weddings and funerals, as well as retail shops, pharmacies and grocery stores – can eliminate that requirement.

A number of businesses, including some restaurants, recreational facilities and museums, say they will maintain their vaccination requirements for now.

All COVID-19 measures except masking are also ending in the provincial legislature, meaning representatives will not be grouped into cohorts and full attendance will be allowed at debates, committees and other legislative matters.

The Opposition NDP, meanwhile, say some measures at the legislature should stay in place because elected members should lead by example and not pretend that the pandemic is over.


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