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COVID-19: “Gatherings and parties can wait,” practice social distancing


Do your part and do it now is the message being sent by Toronto Public Health, Ontario Ministry of Health and Health Canada.

“This is a new concept for us. We are new to social distancing, so I want to be perfectly clear; Having your friends over for dinner or coffee is not social distancing,” said Dr. Eileen de Villa, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health on Wednesday.

Gatherings, parties and playdates are not social distancing is the clear message being sent by all levels of government.

“This is a challenging time. Your local, federal and provincial governments are taking extreme action, as you have seen. Extreme action is also needed from you,” de Villa said. “We all need to take the social responsibilities seriously.”

Ontario has reported 8 new confirmed cases in Toronto thus far today with another update coming at 5:30 pm. This raises the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Toronto up to 116.

“We will continue to see an increasing number of cases, but the extent to which that curve peaks all depends on how well we apply social distancing,” Dr. Eileen de Villa said told reporters Wednesday afternoon.

“I’m asking everyone once again to make every effort and take every opportunity to stay home and practice social distancing,” de Villa said.

Toronto’s medical officer also pleaded to residents to uphold the following practices:

  • Avoid contact with others
  • Continue social distancing – keeping at least six feet apart from other people
  • Stay home and only going out for the absolute essential needs like food and medicine
  • Work from home
  • Help employees to stay home and to work from home
  • Do your grocery shopping online or have someone else do it for you if necessary
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