Chris Glover MPP, Spadina–Fort York

Government of Ontario

COVID-19 Vaccine Info

Vaccine Clinics

CAMH (100 Stokes St.), Tuesdays to Fridays, 9:00 am to 3:30 pm

  • Small, calm environment with staff trained to support people with mental illness, substance abuse disorders, dementia and other neurodiversity.
  • First and second doses for anyone 12+
  • Walk-ins accepted or book your appointment, visit www.camh.ca/covidvaccine

Canoe Landing Vax Days (45 Fort York Blvd., Room 3), Thursdays until December 16, 4-8 pm

  • Open to residents born in 2009 or older
  • No appointment required
  • 1st or 2nd dose of mRNA vaccine available
  • OHIP is not required; Other forms of ID accepted

Evangel Hall Mission (552 Adelaide St. W.), Mondays 9:30 am to 12:00 pm

  • Walk-ins for first and second doses of Pfizer

Metro Toronto Convention Centre (255 Front St. W., North Building, Hall A) Tuesdays to Saturdays, 1:00 to 7:00 pm

  • Anyone born in 2009 or earlier to receive a first or second dose mRNA vaccine.
  • OHIP card not required for walk-ins; other form of identification needed.

Scadding Court Community Centre (707 Dundas St. W.), Wednesdays until December 15, 5:00 to 7:00 pm

Sick-Kids COVID-19 Vaccine Consult Services

  • By-appointment phone service providing a safe, judgement-free space to have an open conversation about the COVID-19 vaccine for children and youth
  • Free over-the-phone interpretation available in many languages
  • Visit sickkids.ca/vaccineconsult to make a booking
  • If you need assistance booking an appointment, call 437-881-3505

Trinity Community Recreation Centre (155 Crawford St.), Tuesdays until December 14, 2:00 to 6:30 pm

  • Open to residents born in 2009 or older
  • No appointment required
  • 1st or 2nd dose of mRNA vaccine available
  • OHIP is not required. Other forms of ID accepted.

Waterfront Neighbourhood Centre (627 Queens Quay W.) Saturdays 12-4 pm and Mondays 6-9 pm

Toronto Public Health Vaccine Clinics: Click here for a complete listing 

  • TPH has compiled a public calendar list with an interactive map of local vaccination clinics.

Hospital Clinics

Pharmacy Clinics

  • Find the pharmacy closest to you that offers COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Most pharmacies book appointments ahead of time and some allow walk-ins. Please call or visit the pharmacy’s website to review eligibility criteria. Bring an OHIP card or other valid government-issued identification.

Indigenous Clinics

  • Anishnawbe Health (179 Gerrard St. E.): All Indigenous people 12+ are welcome. Call to book an appointment at 416-920-2605.
  • Auduzhe Home Visit Vaccines: For all Indigenous people 12+ - First Nations, Inuit and Metis people, regardless of status or registration. Call Auntie at 437-703-8703.

Clinics for Residents without OHIP Cards

Access Alliance: 416-760-8677

    • Monday, Tuesday, Friday: 9:30 am to 4:30 pm
    • Wednesday: 1:00 pm to 4:30 pm
    • Thursday: 12:30 pm to 7:30 pm
    • Phone interpretation services available

Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture: 416-306-4319

  • Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday: 1 to 5 pm
  • Phone interpretation services available

FCJ Refugee Centre: 416-469-9754 ext. 230 and 232; WhatsApp 4372173786

  • Monday to Friday: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Phone interpretation services available

Provincial Booking System

Vaccination Text Line


Vaccine News

Printing Your Vaccine Certificate

If you need assistance printing out your vaccine certificate, please contact my office by calling 416-603-9664 or email [email protected].

 

Health Canada Approves Pfizer Vaccine for Children

Health Canada announced that it has approved the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for children 5-11 years old. The vaccine was shown to be more than 90% effective at preventing COVID-19 in children with no serious side-effects. Health Canada has determined that the benefits of the vaccine for children outweigh the risks.

The National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) suggests that two doses may be offered to children with at least eight weeks between doses, and should wait at least 14 days before or after receiving another vaccine such as the flu shot. Canada is expected to receive 2.9 million child-sized doses. 

Today’s approval by Health Canada is a welcome relief for families across our province. I want to thank public health workers across our province for stepping up once again to find ways to get our children vaccinated.

Here are some links to information you may find helpful:

City of Toronto Children and Vaccines

Tips for Easing Kids' Fears about Getting the COVID-19 Vaccine 

Preparing for COVID-19 Vaccinations for 5-11 Year Olds

NACI Recommendation on the Use of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (10 mcg) in children 5-11 years of age 

 

Vaccine Appointments for Children Available Next Week

The City of Toronto is opening 20,000 vaccine appointments for children at city-run clinics between November 25 and December 5. These bookings are for appointments at the following locations: 

  • Metro Toronto Convention Centre
  • Woodbine Mall
  • Scarborough Town Centre
  • Cloverdale Mall
  • Mitchell Field Arena

Parents of all Toronto children 5-11 years old, regardless of neighbourhood, are eligible to book their first dose appointment at one of these locations. Clinic hours at the clinics will be extended and expanded over the next two weeks. 

Vaccines are by appointment only and no walk-ins are allowed. More appointments will be released in the Provincial Booking System as the vaccination campaign continues. 

 

How to book an appointment: 

Click the blue “Book an Appointment” button on toronto.ca/covid-19 or call the Provincial Vaccine Booking line at 1-833-943-3900 (TTY 1-866-797-0007).

Appointments will be available next week via the Provincial online booking system.

 

COVID-19 Vaccines and Children Webinar

Toronto Public Health invites parents and guardians to this webinar that will help them make an informed decision about getting their children vaccinated.   

Presented by Dr. Vinita Dubey (TPH Associate Medical Officer of Health), this webinar will cover:

 Risks of COVID-19 in children

  • Information on COVID-19 vaccines and children 
  • Facts about vaccines and fertility 
  • COVID-19 vaccination and schools

The webinar will also include a question and answer period.

No registration required.

Choose from one of three session dates:

Session 1

Session 2

Session 3

Thursday, November 25, 2021

11 am to 12 pm

 

Click to join online

 

Or join by phone:

416-915-6530

Access Code: 2463 233 2815

 

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

6:30 pm to 7:30 pm

 

Click to join online

 

Or join by phone:

416-915-6530

Access Code: 2451 962 4232

Thursday, December 2, 2021

11 am to 12 pm

 

Click to join online

 

Or join by phone:

416-915-6530

Access Code: 2466 644 5793

Online password (if required): Toronto

 

Pharmacies to Conduct Symptomatic Testing

Ontario’s Ministry of Health announced it will allow pharmacies to conduct COVID-19 tests on symptomatic patients beginning November 18.

A range of testing options will be available to eligible individuals at participating pharmacies, including:

  • In-store lab-based PCR testing, by appointment only
  • Self-collection lab-based PCR kits, with no appointment necessary 

Self-collection requires an individual to pick up a PCR kit at a participating pharmacy, conduct the test at home and return it to the pharmacy for processing in a lab.

More information is available here.

Pharmacies need to be safe for seniors, immunocompromised people and parents with unvaccinated children, who all need and deserve to get their prescriptions without extra fear of being exposed to COVID. Sending symptomatic people into that setting will cause fear and anxiety, and we can only hope it doesn’t result in vulnerable people getting COVID.

We have been calling on this government to pause this program at least until the risks and safety protocols can be clarified.

 

Ontario Students to Receive Free Rapid Tests During Break

Education Minister Stephen Lecce announced that all Ontario students attending a publicly-funded school will receive 5 rapid antigen tests to take home over the winter break.

Students are being asked to use one test every 3-4 days over the break beginning December 23. Anyone who tests positive with the rapid test will be required to take a PCR test to confirm the results. This is said to be an effort to prevent infected students from re-entering schools in January. 

This decision is contrary to the government’s actions in September, when Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Kieran Moore insisted there was no need for mass asymptomatic testing, and prohibited parents from distributing tests to their school communities. Rapid tests should have been in place when schools opened in September.

 

Updated Mask Guidance for High-Risk Individuals

The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) has provided updated mask guidance and is advising that medical masks should be worn by the following individuals:

  • Anyone who has tested positive for or has symptoms of COVID-19
  • People caring for someone who has tested positive or has symptoms of COVID-19
  • People who live in an overcrowded setting with someone who has tested positive or has symptoms of COVID-19
  • People who are at risk of more severe disease or outcomes from COVID-19
  • People who are at higher risk of exposure to COVID-19 because of their living situation

More information is available here.

 

Federal Government Lifts PCR Testing for Short Trips

The federal government announced that, starting November 30, fully vaccinated Canadians and permanent residents who are visiting the United States for less than 72 hours will not be required to present proof of a PCR COVID-19 test to return home.

All travellers entering Canada, regardless of vaccination status, have been required to present proof of a molecular COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of crossing the land border or boarding a flight. These tests cost anywhere between $150 to $300.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Kieran Moore advised Ontarians to do their own “risk assessment” regarding travel to the U.S. given the lower vaccination rates and higher cases counts. He advised to continue wearing a mask, sanitizing hands and distancing.

Full travel details available here.

 

Ontario Expands Third Doses for Eligible Ontarians

Starting Saturday, November 6 at 8:00 am, the following individuals will be eligible to book a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine:

 

  • Residents 70 and older
  • Healthcare workers and designated essential caregivers in congregate settings
  • Individuals who received two doses of AstraZeneca or one dose of Johnson & Johnson
  • First Nations, Inuit, and Metis adults and their non-Indigenous household members

Third doses cannot be booked any sooner than six months after receiving the second dose.

These new guidelines are in addition to the current ones allowing third doses for all residents of long-term care, First Nations elder care lodges, retirement homes and people receiving immune system-suppressing drugs.

While the booster shots are not mandatory, a third dose is said to add an “extra layer of protection” against COVID-19 and its variants.

Individuals will receive only mRNA vaccines for third shots, regardless of which vaccine was received as initial doses. Those under the age of 70 who receive a third dose of Moderna will be given a half dosage of 50 micrograms. This is due to emerging research that smaller doses of Moderna are as effective at generating lasting immunity.

According to the Ministry, individuals who have experienced myocarditis or pericarditis following any dose of an mRNA vaccine should defer receiving a third mRNA dose until more information is available.

The government is planning to open up third doses to everyone aged 12 and older beginning in January 2022.

Full details regarding eligibility are available here.

 

How to book your third dose appointment:

Residents can book through the Ontario vaccine portal or by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900.

Bookings can also be made directly through public health units that use their own booking systems, through Indigenous-led vaccination clinics, select pharmacies, and primary care settings.

 

Vaccines Not Mandatory for Healthcare Workers

Premier Ford announced that Ontario will not make COVID-19 vaccines mandatory for healthcare workers, stating that he is concerned about staffing shortages. He said that hospitals have strong enough outbreak controls in place that COVID-19 spreading at their facilities will have “little if any impact on patient care.”

The Ontario Hospital Association, along with all three opposition parties at Queen’s Park, have been calling on the government to implement a mandatory vaccination policy for hospital workers since July. The OHA submitted a petition in October favouring a mandate signed by administrators at 120 of Ontario’s 141 hospitals.

Dr. Michael Warner, critical care director at Michael Garron Hospital, said the province’s decision not to require healthcare workers to be fully vaccinated does not make sense.

Doris Grinspun, the chief executive officer of the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario, is also upset with the decision.

The Science Table was clear. The risk of COVID-19 outbreaks causing staff shortages is far worse than the planned shortages caused by removing the few remaining unvaccinated workers. There is also a threat of healthcare workers leaving their jobs if they feel like their workplace is unsafe, because they’re working, eating and spending the day side-by-side with unvaccinated workers.

We are grateful to the vast majority of healthcare workers who have already already received their shots, protecting themselves and their patients, as well as to the Science Table and the Ontario Hospital Association for their recommendations in support of mandatory vaccinations for healthcare workers. 

 

Ontario Lifts Capacity Limits in Most Settings, Announces Next Steps for Reopening Plan

The Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, has released A Plan to Safely Reopen Ontario and Manage COVID-19 for the Long-Term, which outlines the province’s gradual approach to lifting remaining public health and workplace safety measures by March 2022.

Starting Monday, October 25 at 12:01 am, capacity limits will be lifted in the vast majority of settings where proof of vaccination are required:

  • Restaurants, bars and other food or drink establishments
  • Indoor areas of sports and recreational facilities such as gyms and where personal physical fitness trainers provide instruction
  • Casinos, bingo halls and other gaming establishments
  • Indoor meeting and event spaces

Capacity limits will be lifted in other settings, if they choose to require proof of vaccination, including:

  • Personal care services (e.g., barber shops, salons, body art)
  • Indoor areas of museums, galleries, aquariums, zoos, science centres, landmarks, historic sites, botanical gardens and similar attractions
  • Indoor areas of amusement parks
  • Indoor areas of fairs, rural exhibitions, festivals
  • Indoor tour and guide services
  • Boat tours
  • Indoor areas of marinas and boating clubs
  • Indoor clubhouses at outdoor recreational amenities
  • Open house events provided by real estate agencies
  • Indoor areas of photography studios and services
  • Locations where a wedding, funeral or religious service or ceremony takes place

This will not apply to settings where people receive medical care, food from grocery stores and medical supplies.

The government also intends to allow for greater capacity at organized public events such as Remembrance Day ceremonies and Santa Claus parades with more details coming in the near future.

Starting November 15, the government plans to lift capacity limits in the remaining higher-risk settings where proof of vaccination is required, including:

  • Food or drink establishments with dance facilities (e.g., night clubs, wedding receptions in meeting/event spaces where there is dancing)
  • Strip clubs, bathhouses and sex clubs

Starting January 17, the government plans to gradually lift capacity limits where proof of vaccination is not required. Proof-of-vaccination requirements may also gradually be eased at this time.

By March 28, 2022, mask mandates and all remaining public health and workplace safety measures may be lifted. 

The province expects to remove proof-of-vaccination requirements for all remaining settings, including meeting and event spaces, sporting events, concerts, theatres and cinemas, racing venues and commercial and film productions with studio audiences.

Read the news release here.

 

Canada’s Proof-of-Vaccination System for Travellers

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that provinces and territories will be moving forward with a standardized, national proof of vaccination system for domestic and international travel. The new national standard uses the provincial vaccine certificate as its framework. 

Several provinces, including Ontario, that have already begun to roll out their own vaccine passports, will have their version of the Canadian document available by the end of November. The passport will be digital and feature a QR code that includes vaccination history and will have a specific Government of Canada marker in the top corner. Paper copies will also be accepted.

In every province or territory, page 1 will look like the Yukon sample shown above.

While provinces have taken the lead on standardizing the national document, the federal government promised $1 billion to pay for the work.

The government said the technology used prevents forgeries and tampering by detecting any changes to the document after it is issued. The only health information contained in the proof of vaccination will be the holder’s name and vaccine information, such as the type of vaccine, lot number, date of vaccination and the number of doses.

Starting October 30, anyone over the age of 12 who wishes to get on a plane or train in Canada will need to prove they are fully inoculated with a Health Canada approved vaccine. There will be a short transition period until November 30 to allow the unvaccinated to show a negative molecular COVID-19 test instead.

The Canadian vaccine passport does not guarantee entry to a foreign country. Travellers must still check international advisories to make sure their particular doses meet a country’s vaccination criteria.

Full details are available here.

 

Federal Government Replacing COVID Benefits with New Business Supports

Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland announced that new funding will be put in place to replace the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS), which expire on October 23. 

The federal government will spend $7.4 billion on two new programs providing COVID-19 supports for hard-hit businesses and workers which will take effect Sunday: 

  • The Tourism and Hospitality Recovery Program is a wage and rent subsidy program for hotels, tour operators, travel agencies and restaurants with a subsidy of up to 75%.
  • The Hardest-Hit Business Recovery Program is a wage and rent subsidy program for other businesses that have faced deep losses with a subsidy rate of up to 50%.

Eligibility will be based on two factors: an employer’s revenue loss over 12 months during the pandemic and revenue loss in the month of application. The proposed subsidy rates for these programs will be available through to March 13, 2022, and will then decrease by half until expiry on May 7, 2022.

The government will be extending the following programs:

  • Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit and Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit until May 7, 2022 and will increase the maximum duration of each benefit by two additional weeks.
  • Canada Recovery Hiring Program until November 20, 2021 and will increase the subsidy rate to 50%. The government also plans to extend the program to May 7, 2022 through legislation and is looking to make further amendments to the programs through July 2, 2022.

The government also plans to introduce regulations to create the Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit to provide $300 a week to workers who are subject to a lockdown, including those ineligible for employment insurance. The program will be available until May 7, 2022, with retroactive applications starting Sunday.

Full details are available here.

More than 25,000 Ontario small businesses went under in the first year of the pandemic before financial aid was offered. The aid offered by both the Ontario and Federal governments continue to exclude many businesses.

The recent Ontario Financial Advisory Report found that the Ontario government is sitting on over $5 billion in federal funding that was to be used to help small businesses, schools and health services. I continue to urge this government to provide more provincial funding to small businesses.

Vaccine Certificate QR Codes Available for Download

Ontario’s enhanced vaccine certificate with scannable QR code will be available for all vaccinated Ontarians to download. You can also call the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900 to have the enhanced vaccine certificate emailed or mailed to you.

Starting Monday, October 18 at 6:00 am, the portal will be available to all vaccinated Ontarians.

How to download the certificate:

  • If you have a green photo health card (expired cards are accepted), visit the COVID-19 Vaccination Portal here.
  • If you have a red-and-white health card, call the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900 to have your enhanced vaccine certificate emailed or mailed to you.
  • If you do not have an Ontario health card, contact your public health unit to have your identity verified and get a COVID ID. Once you receive an ID, call the phone number above.
  • If you do not have access to a printer, you can have a copy printed for free at a local library or at a ServiceOntario location.
  • If you received your first or second dose out of the province, you must contact that public health unit to record the information and receive an Ontario receipt.

Full details are available on the Ontario Health website here.

 

Verify Ontario App Available to Ontario Businesses

  • Ontario’s vaccine verification app for businesses, Verify Ontario, is now available for download on the Google and Apple app stores.

The app gives businesses and organizations the ability to scan the QR codes on province-issued vaccine certificates. After the code is scanned, a green checkmark will appear indicating a valid vaccine certificate, a red X for an invalid certificate or a yellow warning for a QR that cannot be read. 

The enhanced vaccine certificate allows patrons to show businesses and organizations a QR code containing information on their vaccination status. The Verify Ontario app allows businesses and venues to scan the QR code in the enhanced vaccine certificate.

The QR code when scanned will not generate approval or a checkmark if the individual is not yet fully vaccinated.



The province says they are still working to integrate medical and clinical exemptions into vaccine certificates with QR codes. People who currently have a medical exemption can present a note from a medical doctor or registered nurse.

Ontarians still have the option of using paper vaccine receipts to prove their vaccination status. However, these receipts are no longer available for download from the province’s online portal.

The app is said to also scan most government-issued QR codes from British Columbia and Quebec. It does not request users’ specific locations or collect information linking visitors, businesses or locations together.

Capacity Limits Lifted for Large Venues

Last Friday, the province “quietly” announced that, effective Saturday, October 9, capacity limits would be lifted on the following venues:

  • Concert venues, theatres and cinemas
  • Spectator areas of facilities for sports and recreational fitness (would not include gyms, personal training)
  • Meeting and event spaces (indoor meeting and event spaces will still need to limit capacity to the number that can maintain physical distancing)
  • Horse racing tracks, car racing tracks, and other similar venues
  • Commercial film and television productions with studio audiences
  • Proof of vaccination is already required for these settings, and will remain in place
  • Some outdoor settings with capacity below 20,000 will also have limits lifted

Capacity limits remain in effect for all other settings, including small businesses and restaurants that have been hardest hit during this pandemic.

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Kieran Moore has said that he would be supportive of lifting capacity limits in all settings that require proof of vaccination but he doesn’t want to do so until the full impact of the Thanksgiving weekend is clear.

I have a small business workgroup that I meet with regularly. After hearing their concerns, I wrote a letter asking the government why they are allowing full capacity at large venues and arenas, yet restaurants and small businesses continue to be restricted. If you are interested in joining our group, please email [email protected] and share with your contacts.

Some Ontario Hospitals Mandating Vaccines for Visitors

  • The University Health Network in Toronto announced it will require visitors to show proof of full vaccination starting October 22.

Vaccination is not required for people to be treated in hospital, including visitors for patients that are children, at the end of life, or in labour. There are exceptions for patients in the emergency department, or those who require a support person due to a language barrier or cognitive impairment.

With hospitals now allowing more visitors than in previous waves, the mandates provide an additional layer of protection that is needed around vulnerable patients.

The Ontario government has written a letter to hospital administrators soliciting their input on the idea of mandating vaccination for all healthcare workers. The current government currently requires all unvaccinated healthcare workers to participate in a rapid testing program, but it has not yet made vaccination mandatory.

The government’s delay in mandating vaccinations for long-term care workers caused devastating consequences. For months, we have been urging this government to protect all vulnerable Ontarians with vaccine mandates for all healthcare and education workers. No unvaccinated person should be inside a classroom, an ICU, an emergency room, or anywhere else in the health care and education system.

Long-Term Care Vaccine Mandates and Staff Funding

  • The Ontario government announced it will be mandating that all long-term care workers must be vaccinated against COVID-19 by November 15, after some unvaccinated staff infected residents. Staff includes in-home workers, support workers, students and volunteers. Those who do not have a medical exemption, and cannot show proof of vaccination, will not be allowed to enter a home to work.

The province’s minister of long-term care, Rod Phillips, said that 367 out of the 626 homes in Ontario have below a 90% staff immunization rate. He said that any gaps in staffing created by unvaccinated employees could be filled by mobile support teams and thousands of personal support workers who are about to graduate.

Ontario also recently announced that they will hire more than 4,000 long-term care workers by the end of the fiscal year. This is part of a plan to hire more workers in the sector with a goal of getting long-term care residents an average of four hours of direct care per day by 2025.

Throughout this pandemic, workers in long-term care have risked their lives and put in tireless hours caring for our most vulnerable seniors. Staff have been leaving the sector in droves, complaining of burnout, poor pay and unsafe working conditions.

There is no across-the-board mandate in place for health care workers, which means we’ll see unvaccinated PSWs leaving long-term care — where vaccines are required — to work in home care. Vaccination must be mandatory for all long-term care, all health care and all education workers. Anything less isn’t good enough.

Vaccine Mandates for Travellers, Public Servants, Military

  • The Federal government announced that employees, members of the RCMP, and military staff will have to be vaccinated by the end of this month. Air and rail passengers will also have to be fully vaccinated in order to travel.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called the mandates some of the strongest in the world and workers who are not fully vaccinated without an exemption or who fail to disclose their vaccination status by November 15 will be placed on unpaid administrative leave. 

Travellers will have until the end of November to prove they are fully vaccinated, although they will have to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to travel by the end of October.

Ontario Releases More Details on Vaccine Certificate Program

  • The Ontario government has released the regulations and guidance for businesses and organizations in implementing its proof of vaccination program. Starting September 22, 2021 the government will require proof of immunization in select settings with the goal of limiting COVID-19 transmission and outbreaks, encouraging more Ontarians to get vaccinated, and supporting businesses to remain open.

The government is now setting a target of getting 90% of Ontarians with both doses of a vaccine. As of Tuesday morning, 84.49% of eligible Ontarians had received one dose of a vaccine, and 78.2% had received two doses. To further increase vaccine uptake, the province is continuing its last mile strategy to reach eligible individuals who have yet to receive a first or second dose.

Proof of vaccination rules apply only to customers, not staff. Businesses are able to implement their own proof of vaccination policy if they are not covered by the government’s regulations, but would be required to seek their own legal advice. Public health and workplace safety measures continue to apply, including masking, screening and contact tracing.

An individual is considered fully vaccinated if they have received:

  • The full series of a COVID-19 vaccine authorized by Health Canada, or any combination of such vaccines (Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson)
  • One or two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine not authorized by Health Canada, followed by one dose of a COVID-19 mRNA vaccine authorized by Health Canada
  • Three doses of a COVID-19 vaccine not authorized by Health Canada
  • The final dose of a COVID-19 vaccine received at least 14 days before proof of vaccination is provided

Providing proof of vaccination:

  • Customers must provide proof of vaccination and ID at the point of entry
  • Paper or PDF receipts (on a mobile device) can be shown
  • Receipt must show that the holder is fully vaccinated    
  • Businesses must review and confirm proof of vaccination and ID
  • Person’s name and date of birth on ID must match the vaccination receipt
  • Customers are not allowed to enter a business if the name and DOB on both documents do not match

Photo ID is accepted but not required. Accepted forms of ID: 

  • Birth certificate
  • Citizenship card
  • Driver’s licence
  • Government (Ontario or other) issued identification card, including health card
  • Indian Status Card / Indigenous Membership Card
  • Passport
  • Permanent Resident card

Businesses where proof of vaccination will be required:

  • Restaurants and bars (excluding outdoor patios, delivery and takeout)
  • Nightclubs, including outdoor areas
  • Meeting and event spaces like banquet halls and convention centres
  • Sports and fitness facilities and gyms, with the exception of youth recreational sports
  • Sporting events
  • Casinos, bingo halls and gaming establishments
  • Concerts, music festivals, theatres and cinemas
  • Strip clubs, bath houses and sex clubs
  • Racing venues
  • Indoor areas of waterparks
  • Areas of commercial TV, where studio audiences will be treated as patrons who have to be fully vaccinated

Some exemptions:

  • Workers, contractors, repair workers, delivery workers, students, volunteers, inspectors or others who are entering the business or organization for work purposes and not as patrons
  • When a patron enters an indoor area solely to use a washroom, pay for an order or access an outdoor area that can only be accessed through an indoor route
  • When a patron enters an indoor area to place or pick up an order (including placing a bet or picking up winnings at a horse racing track), to purchase admission, to make a retail purchase, and for the “necessary purposes of health and safety” 
  • Children under 12 years old
  • Patrons under 18 years old who are entering the indoor premises of a recreational facility solely for the purpose of actively participating in an organized sport
  • Weddings, funerals, rites or ceremonies, when the patron is not attending the associated social gathering (e.g. the reception after a wedding ceremony)
  • Patrons with a written document from a physician or a nurse practitioner stating they are exempt for medical reasons

Enforcement:

  • All provincial offence officers: by-law, police, public health inspectors, regulatory officers from ministries and agencies can enforce proof of vaccination 
  • Non-compliance by individuals and business can result in charges and fines   
  • Provincial offence officers may take a measured approach to enforcing orders that balance public safety, health and other risks businesses owners are managing   
  • Starting this week, officers are visiting businesses and organizations to raise awareness of new proof of vaccination requirements   
  • The government will also provide information on tools and resources to help businesses and organizations implement the necessary COVID-19 safety plan measures – e.g. workplace violence and harassment measures   
  • In the event of harassment or threats of violence, contact law enforcement 

The province says guidance for businesses will be updated before October 22 when the QR codes will be implemented and will contain the same information as on current vaccine receipts. The Ministry of Health will be looking into issuing an exemption for anyone that does not want to use the QR code system and can continue to use the print version after October 22 if they choose. Businesses will be able to download a free app to scan and verify QR codes after that date.

Businesses and organizations can submit questions to the Ministry of Health here.

The official opposition NDP believe that the government’s certificate program is coming too late, and the list of exemptions is long and confusing, once again putting the onus on our small businesses who are already struggling. With this long list of exemptions and loopholes, this government is not putting public health first. 

The government should be reaching out to people having challenges getting a vaccine. We need a solid vaccine certificate program and Safety Zones to stop aggressive protestors from interfering at businesses, hospitals and clinics.

How to obtain your vaccine receipt:

  • If you have a green photo OHIP card, go to this link to download or print your vaccination receipt. You will be asked to provide your date of birth and postal code.
  • If you have a red-and-white health card, you will need to call the Provincial Vaccine Booking Line at 1-833-943-3900 to access your documents.
  • If you received your first or second dose outside of Ontario, contact that local public health unit and request your vaccination information.
  • All other vaccine certificate questions can be directed to the Provincial Vaccine Information Line at 1-888-999-6488.

Free Printing of Vaccination Receipts at Toronto Libraries

Public Health Measures in Schools

  • In keeping with provincial guidance, several public health measures are in place in schools to protect students and staff including masking, and cohorting students. Toronto Public Health (TPH) also continues to recommend frequent hand washing, cleaning protocols, and for staff and students to complete TPH’s screening questionnaire or the provincial school screening tool each day, and for schools to confirm the completion of the screen. The Ontario Ministry of Education has also announced a vaccination policy for school staff.

TPH completes an investigation for all laboratory-confirmed cases related to schools. Principals are recommended to follow TPH's COVID-19 Decision Guide for Principals to Dismiss Cohorts to Self-Isolate, which explains when to dismiss affected cohorts while allowing those who are fully vaccinated to continue to attend school as long as they have no symptoms. 

TPH declares an outbreak if there are two or more lab-confirmed COVID-19 cases in students and/or staff in a school with an epidemiological link within 14 days. This means that there is at least one case that could have reasonably acquired their infection in school, which includes transportation and before and after school care.  

Active school outbreaks are posted on TPH’s Active Outbreaks dashboard, under the “Schools” tab. The dashboard is updated five times per week, from Monday to Friday, except on statutory holidays. TPH will also share school cohort dismissal and outbreaks via Twitter at 5 p.m., from Monday to Friday. 

Last week, TPH announced a pause on all extracurricular activities during the month of September. This pause will allow school boards to gradually re-open after months of online learning, and support better contact tracing amidst the more contagious Delta variant. Schools are reintroducing protocols around infection prevention and control as part of health guidelines. This gradual introduction allows students and educators to adapt to these safety measures and ensure a smooth beginning to the school year. 

The late notice about the change followed new modelling from the province’s science table and talk of the need for fewer interactions to help keep COVID-19 in check, something echoed by Dr. Theresa Tam, the Chief Public Health Officer of Canada.

Ontario’s Digital Identification Program

  • Ontario will be launching a digital identification program later this year. Ontarians will have an electronic version of their government ID (i.e. driver’s licence, health card) which will be stored in a digital wallet app. The app will be available for download onto smartphones and other devices.

  

The digital ID will allow people and businesses to prove who they are both online and in person, and it offers more privacy to users. For example, if you need to prove you’re 18, the verifier will only know you are over 18 and not your date of birth or actual age.  

The digital ID is not stored in a central database, it is only saved on your own personal device and can be turned off if your device is stolen. The government will not be able to track you or know where you used your digital ID. The digital ID is not usable without your permission, you must consent before sharing any information.

Ontario’s digital ID will also be able to be used in relation to the vaccine certificate program which is set to launch on September 22, 2021. The program requires government-issued ID to be used alongside the vaccine certificate.  

The digital ID will be available to use at the settings below (this list is set to increase over the years as the program develops):

  • Making an age-sensitive purchase (like a lottery ticket) 
  • Picking up a package at the post office 
  • Applying for government assistance (such as disability support) or benefits (such as CERB or EI) 
  • To access and use vaccination records 
  • Opening a bank account 
  • Making a medical appointment 
  • Visiting a doctor 
  • To access medical records online 
  • Get, renew or replace a driver’s licence 
  • Apply for, renew or replace a health card 
  • Renew or replace a licence plate sticker 

For more information on Ontario’s digital ID program, please visit the website. 

Health Canada Approves Moderna for Children 12 and Older

  • Health Canada announced that it has authorized the Moderna vaccine for children as young as 12 to help in the fight against COVID-19. The decision comes just weeks before children across the province go in-class learning.

A total of 3,732 adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17 were enrolled in the study and randomly received either two doses of the vaccine or placebo 28 days apart. All participants will be followed for the assessment of safety, efficacy and immunogenicity for up to one year after receiving a second dose.

Health Canada says that the most common adverse reactions for the group that received the vaccine was pain or swelling at the injection site, fatigue and headaches that lasted one to three days. The agency concluded that vaccine efficacy in adolescents 12 to 17 years of age is consistent with that in the adult population.

Ontario Announces New Vaccine Policy for Health Care and Education Workers, Pauses Further Reopening 

  • Ontario has announced a new vaccine policy for health care and education workers. The new policy is to be implemented in high-risk settings no later than September 7. 

Employees, staff, contractors, students, and volunteers at hospitals and home and community care settings will, at a minimum, have to provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19, have a medical reason for not being vaccinated, or complete a vaccination educational session. People in these settings who do not provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19 will be required to undertake regular testing.

The Ministry of Education will also introduce a vaccination disclosure policy for all publicly-funded school board employees, as well as staff in private schools and licenced child care settings. Rapid COVID-19 testing will be required for staff who are not fully immunized against COVID-19. 

Vaccination policies will also be implemented in other high-risk settings, including:

  • Post-secondary institutions
  • Licenced retirement homes
  • Women’s shelters
  • Congregate group homes and day programs for adults with developmental disabilities
  • Children’s treatment centres and other services for children with special needs
  • Licensed children’s residential settings

The government also announced that it will be indefinitely pausing any further reopening due to the risk of the Delta variant. The Chief Medical Officer of Health said they will continue to monitor the data to determine when it is safe to move beyond Step 3 of the Reopening Plan and lift the majority of safety measures currently in place.

My colleagues and I in the Official Opposition don’t believe this announcement goes far  enough. With COVID-19 cases on the rise and the first day of school only three weeks away, we need to put the safety of children and vulnerable people first. No unvaccinated person should be in a classroom or health care setting. A test just once per week is not the same as a mandatory vaccine. This government is not requiring anyone – from long-term care to child care – to get a vaccine. This government is still refusing to implement a vaccine certificate program, which is absolutely critical to protect people’s health, protect our progress, and keep non-essential businesses safely running.

Ontario to Offer Third Doses for Vulnerable Groups, Shots for 11-year-olds

  • Ontario will be administering third doses of COVID-19 vaccines to immuno-compromised people and the elderly. Third doses are being offered to counter the impact of the Delta variant. Recent studies have shown that antibodies created through vaccination can begin to wane several months after doses one and two, in the elderly and other vulnerable populations.

The following groups will be eligible for third doses:

  • Organ transplant recipients (8 weeks after second dose)
  • Those diagnosed with hematological cancers undergoing targeted therapy
  • Rituximab, ocrelizumab or ofatumumab drug recipients
  • Long-term care, retirement home and First Nation elder care lodge residents (5 months after second dose)

Starting Wednesday, August 18, anyone born in 2009 turning 12 by the end of the year will be eligible to book a Pfizer vaccine appointment through the provincial booking system, public health unit, pharmacies or walk-in vaccination clinics.

Officials have said that Ontario has closely monitored data from Alberta and British Columbia in making this decision, and these provinces have offered the Pfizer vaccine to youth born in 2009 for several months with no risks identified.

Ontario Schools to Run COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics

  • The province announced that local public health units and boards will be required to host COVID-19 immunization clinics. The school clinics are expected to run before the school year begins and in the first few weeks of classes. Clinics can run before, during or after school hours, either on school property or off-site in partnership with the school board.

This strategy is to make it easy for unvaccinated students, families and staff to get their shots before they return to classrooms next month. Youth aged 12 to 17 have the lowest vaccination rate of eligible age cohorts in Ontario, with 69% having received one dose and 55% fully vaccinated. There are currently no COVID-19 vaccines approved in Canada for children under 12.

For months, my colleagues and I have been calling on this government to reach out to families and work with them to ensure every eligible student is fully vaccinated before September. This plan for school clinics simply doesn’t go far enough and more must be done to overcome barriers to vaccination.

GO-VAXX Buses Serve as Mobile Vaccine Clinics

  • The Ontario government has partnered with Metrolinx and have converted two GO buses that will serve as mobile vaccine clinics at malls, festivals, community hubs and events throughout the summer and fall. Each bus is fully accessible and operates as a fully functioning vaccine clinic with the necessary supplies and trained staff to provide assistance to people and ensure vaccines are administered safely. All COVID-19 safety precautions will be followed on board, including the required pre-vaccination screening and post-vaccination monitoring. GO-VAXX buses are administering the Pfizer vaccine. No appointments are needed. See the GO-VAXX bus schedule here.

If you are interested in having a GO-VAXX bus visit your community, please contact [email protected].

Support for Mandatory Vaccines for Health Care and Education Workers 

  • My NDP colleagues and I support mandatory vaccination in health care and education, based on science and public health priorities. We have to protect the most vulnerable among us — including children who can’t yet be vaccinated, the elderly, people who are sick and people with disabilities.

    The president of the Registered Nurses Association of Ontario said that “vaccines should absolutely be mandatory for health care workers, as well as teachers, and workers in other industries, barring special medical circumstances.” Currently, health care workers are not required to tell patients whether or not they are vaccinated.

    The Premier responded that while he supports hospitals requiring negative COVID-19 tests for unvaccinated workers, he will not force health care workers or any one else to get vaccinated.

    University Health Network announced that it will be implementing a new policy on August 9 that will require staff that choose not to disclose their vaccination status to take a rapid at-home COVID-19 test and report the result at least 48 hours prior to coming to work. Those employees will also have to participate in an education session about vaccination. Exemptions will be made for any employees who have a documented medical reason for not being vaccinated.

All City-run Vaccination Clinics Now Open for Walk-ins

  • The City of Toronto vaccination clinics will open to youth and adult walk-ins between noon and 7:00 pm. Eligible residents who need a second dose and those who have yet to receive a first dose can be vaccinated immediately. Anyone taking advantage of the walk-in option to accelerate their second dose should cancel any existing second dose appointment, whether at a City-run or partner clinic. Walk-ins should always prepare for a short wait that may include time lining up outdoors.

All people age 12 and older can also book first dose or accelerated second dose vaccination appointment through the blue “Book a Vaccine” button at toronto.ca/covid-19 or by calling the provincial vaccine booking line at 1-833-943-3900.

Science Advisory Table Suggests Vaccine Certificates 

  • Ontario’s COVID-19 Science Advisory Table published a report on Wednesday suggesting that “vaccine certificates” could help speed up the reopening as well as encourage more people to get vaccinated. The summary said that the certificates “may be useful as verifiable, secure, standardized, and accessible electronic or paper records of immunization” and could be used to allow people to enter places like indoor dining, bars, and gyms. The certificates could allow the reopening of these “high-risk settings sooner and/or at increased capacity.”

The documents may also be useful if the province faces further waves of COVID-19 due to variants and health measures have to be reintroduced. The table has raised concerns that organizations and sectors will create their own systems if there is no government regulation. Governments would also need to determine where the certificates would be prohibited, such as for essential services and healthcare.

The Premier has been against the implementation of a vaccine passport system in Ontario. The science table said that certificates are different from passports, as they would be used for domestic purposes, not for international travel.

Anyone 12+ Now Eligible to Book a Vaccine

  • On Monday, July 5, everyone age 12 and older became eligible to book an accelerated second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Children between the ages of 12 and 17 are only eligible for the Pfizer vaccine. Second dose appointments can be booked by anyone who received a first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine at least 28 days ago or a first dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine at least eight weeks ago. More information on second dose eligibility can be found here: COVID-19 vaccines: getting your second dose

You can access the online booking system here: Ontario.ca/bookvaccine

When booking an appointment, you will be asked for information from your green Ontario health card, birth date, postal code and email address and/or phone number. People who still have a red and white health card, or who require assistance with booking, can call and book through the COVID-19 Vaccine Call Centre at 1-833-943-3900

Using a smartphone, residents can text VACCINE to 1-833-750-0888 and choose to receive COVID-19 booking information in Traditional Chinese, Simplified Chinese, Tagalog, Tamil, Urdu, Spanish, Portuguese, Farsi, Korean, Italian, French, Bengali, Vietnamese and Gujarati. Users can also enter their postal code to receive a list of City of Toronto-run clinics and pharmacies offering vaccinations nearest to them. Here’s the City of Toronto Information page on how to get a COVID-19 vaccine.

Vaccine Receipts Available Online

  • If you are missing or have misplaced your vaccine receipt, the provincial government has made them available online. Although vaccinated individuals should have received both printed and emailed confirmation following their vaccination, a digital copy can now be accessed at covid19.ontariohealth.ca. Individuals can log in using their OHIP number, date of birth and postal code, and click on “vaccine receipts” to view and print their receipt. This could be useful for anyone requiring proof of their immunized status.

AstraZeneca Second Doses Available; Province Approves Mixing and Matching Vaccines

  • Ontario residents who received AstraZeneca are eligible to book their second dose at an eight-to-twelve-week interval. They can book a second dose by contacting the pharmacy or primary care provider where they received their first dose.

  • People who received a first dose of AstraZeneca will also have the choice to book a second dose of an mRNA vaccine like Pfizer or Moderna. Those opting for an mRNA vaccine can schedule their second dose through a participating pharmacy offering Pfizer or Moderna.

The list of pharmacies can be found here: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/vaccine-locations

Second shots of a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine can be booked through the provincial booking system or local health units starting next week.

Toronto Offering In-Home Second Doses for Homebound Residents

  • People 12 years and older who live in Toronto and cannot physically leave their home to receive the vaccine for medical, physical, cognitive or psychosocial reasons are eligible for in-home vaccination. Essential caregivers are also eligible to receive the vaccine. More details about in-home vaccinations can be obtained by calling the Toronto Seniors Helpline at 416-217-2077 or online at torontoseniorshelpline.ca/web-chat.

Vaccination Appointments and Walk-ins Available at City-Run Clinics 

  • Appointments and walk-ins are available at City-run immunization clinics. Open to anyone born in 2009 (turning 12 by end of the year) or earlier. 

    To book your appointment, visit: https://www.toronto.ca/home/covid-19/
    If you need assistance, or to book by phone, please call: 1-833-943-3900

Residents will need to provide their provincial health card number, birthdate, postal code and email and/or mobile phone number. At the time of booking, residents will schedule their first vaccination appointment and an appointment to receive their second dose.

Rapid Screening Kits for Small Businesses

The City of Toronto has partnered with the Toronto Region Board of Trade to provide free COVID-19 rapid screening kits to small- and medium-sized businesses across Toronto. Businesses in Toronto with 150 or fewer employees are welcome to participate in this voluntary initiative. Click here to learn more.

Eligible businesses can visit https://bot.com/rapidscreening to order their initial four-week supply of testing kits from the Toronto Region Board of Trade and book a time slot for pickup. The kits will be available for scheduled pickup at the following locations beginning Friday, June 18:

  • Etobicoke Civic Centre, 399 The West Mall
  • North York Civic Centre, 5100 Yonge St.
  • Scarborough Civic Centre, 150 Borough Dr.
  • Fort York Visitor Centre, 250 Fort York Blvd.

Rapid Testing Portal for Essential Businesses

  • Ontario is launching a rapid testing portal for essential businesses to access free rapid testing kits. Any essential businesses with more than 150 employees are encouraged to participate in the Provincial Antigen Screening Program by registering through the new portal. Free rapid antigen screening kits will be provided to these businesses to help screen for asymptomatic cases of COVID-19.

Vaccine Assistance for Seniors and Homebound Persons

The Spadina-Fort York Community Care Program

  • The Spadina-Fort York Community Care program will be helping seniors 50 and older who are having trouble registering for a vaccine. Please email [email protected] or call 647-904-6637.

If you manage a co-operative housing building or an organization with seniors or other vulnerable residents, please complete this form to request assistance.

If you would like to volunteer with this program or other Spadina-Fort York Community Care activities, please complete this form.

Homebound Persons with Primary Care Provider

  • If you are a homebound person receiving care through a Primary Care Provider, Family Health Team, Home or Community Care or Community Support Services or Agencies, please contact your provider to learn whether they are able to offer in-home vaccination. Many teams are beginning to organize or being supported to offer in-home vaccination and will begin to reach out to their patients and/or clients in the coming weeks. If your provider is not able to offer at-home vaccination, they will place your name onto a list for at-home vaccination.

Toronto Offering In-Home Second Doses for Homebound Residents

  • People 12 years and older who live in Toronto and cannot physically leave their home to receive the vaccine for medical, physical, cognitive or psychosocial reasons are eligible for in-home vaccination. Essential caregivers are also eligible to receive the vaccine. More details about in-home vaccinations can be obtained by calling the Toronto Seniors Helpline at 416-217-2077 or online at torontoseniorshelpline.ca/web-chat

Transportation for Seniors/Vulnerable Residents

  • The City of Toronto announced the Vaccine Equity Transportation Plan to help ensure vulnerable residents and seniors can access COVID-19 vaccinations by making it easier to travel to clinics. This program is intended for those who have limited transportation options or who cannot afford transportation to vaccination appointments. This program is available now for limited appointments, but will continue to be expanded over the coming weeks as additional resources and capacity become available.

To book a ride:

People who receive social assistance may be eligible for medical transportation funds to help cover costs of travel to receive their COVID-19 vaccination. Social assistance recipients should contact their caseworker to access transportation funds they may be eligible for.