GTA regions outside of COVID-19 lockdown brace for influx of Black Friday shoppers

It appears that some shoppers from the locked down areas of Toronto and Peel Region are heading to malls elsewhere in the GTA for Black Friday deals. 680 NEWS reporter Kevin Misener was outside the Vaughan Mills shopping centre earlier this morning.

By News Staff

Black Friday normally means frenzied shopping, packed stores and large lineups all in the name of great deals, but it is going to be a little different this year with lockdown restrictions in Toronto and Peel Region.

Despite the lockdown in those two areas, unaffected regions in the GTA are still preparing for big crowds at their shopping centres.

The malls and stores will be open for Black Friday sales in Halton, Durham and York regions, and there are concerns that people in Toronto and Peel may go shopping elsewhere in the GTA.

York Region health officials are ramping up inspection efforts to ensure public health rules are being followed. Officers from the regions task force will be visiting malls, big box stores, restaurants and gyms.


Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti, one of several municipal leaders expressing concern, is asking people from outside of York Region not to visit his municipality — though he admits there isn’t much he can to about cross-border shoppers.

“We don’t want retailers to invite people to line up and flood there entrances first thing in the morning,” Scarpitti says.

He says the message to retailers isn’t to have no sales, but to have sales that keep in mind public health guidelines. Businesses who fail to adhere to guidelines will be subject to fines and repeat offenders may be shut down.

Vaughan Mills says on its website that they are anticipating high volumes of shoppers and as a result, are keeping safety measures in place.

There were 32 inspections conducted last weekend, which resulted in 22 charges laid at 19 properties in the region.

Toronto Mayor John Tory has been asking bargain hunters in Toronto to shop online only and not leave the city.

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