Ontario Premier Doug Ford is urging the thousands of people who flocked to Trinity Bellwoods Park in Toronto’s west end on Saturday to get tested for COVID-19.
Ford said Monday that he was “disappointed” to see an estimated crowd of 10,000 people flock to the popular greenspace, and he encouraged them to head to an assessment centre to be tested.
“My recommendation to anyone at Trinity Bellwoods, why don’t you do us all a favour and go get tested now,” he said.
Ford said that the park resembled “a rock concert without the band,” with social distancing rules seemingly ignored en masse.
“These are smart young people that were there, come on guys, give me a break,” Ford said. “Don’t do reckless things like that.
“What I worry about is them going back home, how about their family members? Weren’t they thinking of them when they went there?”
Toronto Mayor John Tory apologized after photos surfaced online showing him speaking with people at Trinity Bellwoods with his mask pulled down over his chin on Saturday.
“I visited Trinity Bellwoods Park to try to determine why things were the way they were,” Tory said in a statement released Sunday.
“I fully intended to properly physically distance but it was very difficult to do. I wore a mask into the park but I failed to use it properly, another thing I’m disappointed about. These were mistakes that I made and as a leader in this city, I know that I must set a better example going forward.”
When asked if Tory should also be tested, Ford said: “That’s up to the mayor. He’s been working hard day in and day out. He’s working his back off.”
Ford also said Monday that he wouldn’t punish the rest of the province by rolling back restrictions after the reckless behaviour seen in Toronto over the weekend.
“I’m not going to punish the whole province because a group of people in Toronto ended up getting together,” he said.
“We can’t paint a broad brush across Toronto, you get the odd group that misbehaves — that’s not reflective of the people of Toronto.”