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Ontario’s new COVID-19 restrictions include increased police powers, restricting gatherings

The Ontario government has unveiled several new COVID-19 restrictions aimed at curbing record-high cases in the province, including increased police powers, provincial border checkpoints and restricting outdoor gatherings.

Premier Doug Ford made the announcement at Queen’s Park Friday afternoon.

“We’re losing the battle between the variants and vaccines,” he told reporters.

“The reality is there are few options left.”

Read more:
Ontario reports more than 4,800 new COVID-19 cases, setting another single-day record

The new restrictions came as the provincial government unveiled new projection data on Friday indicating the only way to flatten the surge of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations is a six-week stay-at-home order and at least 100,000 doses of vaccine administered a day.

According to the documents, there has been a 67 per cent growth in hospitalizations related to the virus and a 51 per cent growth in ICU occupancy.

Officials also noted under every scenario, more vaccinations mean a faster resolution to the COVID-19 crisis in the long run.

This is a developing story that will be updated throughout the day.

— With files from The Canadian Press

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