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Torontonians flock to parks over the weekend despite coronavirus safety measures

Last Updated Mar 30, 2020 at 8:43 am EDT

Summary

“Stay home, stay away from these places,” Mayor John Tory says.


The 311 phone system lit up with people reporting on others not properly social distancing in parks and green spaces.


Toronto Public Health has had 540 cases of COVID-19 reported in Toronto as of Sunday, up from 512 cases on Saturday.


Physical distancing rules seemed to go out the window this weekend as summer temperatures swooped into the GTA, prompting a warning from a frustrated Mayor John Tory.

With a high of 18 C on Sunday, right across the city there were reports of people ripping down signs and yellow tape, using park facilities and playgrounds, and not staying the recommended two-metres apart.

“Stay home, stay away from these places,” Tory said.

“It’s not because we’re trying be killjoys, we’re trying to stop a health emergency here and to have it come to an end as soon as possible.”

And it wasn’t just Tory frustrated with people’s actions.

The city’s 311 phone system lit up over the weekend with people reporting on others not properly social distancing in parks and green spaces. The phone line received roughly 4,600 calls a day over the weekend from concerned citizens.

Toronto Public Health has had 540 cases of COVID-19 reported in Toronto as of Sunday, up from 512 cases on Saturday. Currently, 39 of these people are hospitalized and there are 18 in ICU.

Over the weekend, the province announced that it was lowering the number of people allowed to gather in one space from 50 to five, in its ongoing efforts to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 pandemic.

On Sunday, Ontario saw its biggest one-day jump so far in confirmed cases with 211 – including two more deaths.