Trudeau asks Atlantic premiers to help with Ontario COVID-19 outbreak

Trudeau asks Atlantic premiers to help with Ontario COVID-19 outbreak

The pandemic restrictions imposed by Canada's most populous province immediately ran into opposition as police departments insisted they wouldn't use new powers to randomly stop pedestrians or motorists and health experts complained the rules focus on outdoor activities rather than more unsafe indoor settings.

Among the enhanced restrictions and extended stay-at-home order announced by the Ford government on Friday, the province said police officers temporarily have the power to enforce the order and legally stop people on the street and in vehicles to ask their reason for leaving their home.

The new powers given to police were broadly criticized and, by Saturday afternoon, the office of the solicitor general clarified the new measures to say that police would only be able to question people who are suspected of participating in an "organized public event or social gathering".

On Friday, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association described it as "a Black Friday of rights slashing" - saying it carries a risk of racial profiling.

In a note to constituents, Jill Andrew, a provincial New Democrat politician in Toronto, said the measures show just how out of touch the Ford government is. "I'm wondering how much consultation actually took place between them and the police services before the order came out", Semple said.

P.E.I. public health officials have also reached out to UPEI and Holland College to ask them to share information with health-care graduates who may be interested in going to Ontario to help. People who aren't complying with the stay-at-home rules can be fined up to $750.

In announcing them, Ford said the province was "on its heels" and new measures were urgently needed. It has since modified parts of that order relating to park playgrounds and policing powers.

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"We are bringing a challenge as quickly as possible, in order to restore peoples' freedom from arbitrary police stops", CCLA Executive Director Michael Bryant said in a statement.

"I would like to reassure our citizens that our officers will not be conducting random vehicle or individual stops", Peel Regional Police Chief Nishan Duraiappah said in a statement on Saturday.

The restrictions ban residents from gathering with people outside of their household and prohibit most outdoor activities, even limiting outdoor gatherings among people from the same household.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Sunday that the federal government will send resources and support to Ontario, the province battling a worrying spike in Covid infections.

Yes. Capacity at supermarkets, grocery stores, convenience stores, indoor farmers' markets, and pharmacies will be capped at 25 per cent.

Similar checkpoints will also be set up along the Ontario-Manitoba border.

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