On Mar.26 Renfrew County and District Health Unit distributed the following notice of COVID-19 Safe Dining rules to take effect on Friday, April 2, 2021:
Effective April 02, 2021 – Renfrew County and District Health Unit (RCDHU) is requiring that patrons dine out with household members only to help limit the spread of COVID-19 across Renfrew County and District (RCD). This is especially important as the number of presumed variants of concern (VOC) cases rise across the province.
“Residents of RCD have been doing great so far at adhering to public health measures, and most restaurants and establishments have been taking all necessary precautions, however, we need to take greater precautions to protect our communities, families and friends, as variants of concern come closer to home,” states Dr. Robert Cushman, Acting Medical Officer of Health.
Close-contact between members of different households that occur in local food establishments present one of the highest risks for COVID-19 transmission, especially when masks/face coverings are not being worn while eating or drinking. When dining in enclosed public spaces, it is difficult to maintain a minimum physical distance of two metres from others who are seated at your table.
These requirements are being implemented to minimize the risk of transmission and to align with the Reopening Ontario Act, 2020. To help ensure the safety of RCD residents and limit the spread of COVID-19, patrons who are wishing to be seated at the same table with others in a public dining area can:
- only dine with people from the same household;
- dine with a caregiver or;
- dine with someone who lives alone and is joining one other household.
RCDHU will work with food premise operators and provide resources, including a formal Letter of Instruction and the Collection of Information for Food Premises Attestation Form, to assist them in carrying out this important campaign. This is enforceable under provincial legislation, O. Reg 364/20, which requires individuals in a place of business or facility that is open to the public to maintain a physical distance of at least two metres from anyone outside of their immediate household, except if someone lives alone and has close contact with one other household or if the individual is a caregiver.
It is imperative that everyone do their part to keep the community safe; stay home if they are sick, avoid contact with people who are ill, practice physical distancing (2 metres), wear a mask/face covering when physical distancing cannot be maintained, wash their hands, use the COVID Alert App, and complete the COVID-19 self-assessment tool or COVID-19 school screening tool daily before going to an enclosed public space, work, school or daycare, to monitor for symptoms and proper guidance.
For more information, visit RCDHU’s website at https://www.rcdhu.com/novel-coronavirus-covid-19-2/ or call 613-735-8654 or 1-800-267-1097.
Renfrew County & District Health Unit(2021,Mar.26) RCDHU Introduces “COVID-19 Safe Dining” Requirements for Patrons and Operators [media release]