On May 7, 2020 the Ontario government announced that they have further eased restrictions on retail stores and essential construction projects. Specifically:
- Garden centres and nurseries will be able to open beginning on Friday, May 8, 2020 at 12:01 a.m., for in-store payment and purchases, operating under the same guidelines as grocery stores and pharmacies. The government has published, among others, Guidance on Health and Safety for Food Retail Sector during COVID-19 and Stock, Produce, Meat or Grocery Associates during COVID-19 and Guidance on Health and Safety for Garden Centre Sector During COVID-19.
- Hardware stores and safety supply stores will be permitted to open for in-store payment and purchases beginning on Saturday, May 9, 2020 at 12:01 a.m. Among other guidelines, the government has published Guidance on Health and Safety for Cashiers during COVID-19 and Guidance on Health and Safety for Retail General Labour Employees during COVID-19.
- Retail stores with a street entrance can begin offering curbside pickup and delivery beginning on Monday, May 11, 2020 at 12:01 a.m.. These establishments will have to operate in accordance with the Ministry of Health’s Guidance Document for Essential Workplaces and occupational health and safety requirements.
In terms of curbside delivery and pickup, Workplace Safety & Prevention Services have published Guidance on Health and Safety for Curbside Pickup and Delivery Services during COVID-19.
As I’ve written previously, as governments begin the process of slowly and carefully reopening the economy it’s important that employers review all applicable Resources to prevent COVID-19 in the workplace and follow all public health directives and guidelines and comply with health and safety legislation.