‘Live My Life’: People Head North to Cottages Despite Stay-at-Home Ontario Order


TORONTO – Although Ontario is subject to a stay-at-home order, some families venture out of their communities to enjoy the water and spend time at the cottage.

“Everyone starts playing golf, so why can’t we go camping, right?” Cody Spencer said along the way a homestead near Mattawa.

Spencer’s destination is over 300 kilometers from where he spoke to CTV News Toronto on the King City ON route along Highway 400.

“I’m still living my life,” he says. “We have cars coming and going like crazy, so we’re going to be living our lives, enjoying the long weekend.”

As part of the stay at home order, people with more than one residence are only allowed to move to another residence if the person intends to stay there less than 24 hours for certain purposes listed in the ordinance.

These reasons may include household maintenance and sanitation, or if the person intends to stay in the residence for 14 days.

Failure to comply with the order could face a fine of $ 750, a spokesperson for the Solicitor General said in an email to CTV News Toronto on Friday.

For more serious offenses, the police could issue a subpoena requiring them to appear in court. If found guilty, a judge could impose a fine of up to $ 100,000, the spokesperson added.

On Thursday, the Ontario government announced its intention to reopen the economy.

Some outdoor activities and amenities are allowed to reopen from Saturday, including golf, tennis.

Tracey Jordan, mother of four, was traveling to Wasaga Beach for a day at the beach from West Hamilton with another family traveling in two vehicles.

“These are mixed feelings,” said Jordan, who explains that she understood the rules as being allowed to be outside.

When told about the stay home order, she said she found the rules confusing.

“I don’t think they know what left and right are,” she said. “They have to stay on track, deal with the situation so that we can move forward.”

Jordan didn’t think it was fair for some families to go to cottages this long weekend, but thinks his day at the beach is safe.

“I’m a hypocrite because I’m heading for the beach … but no stopping except here,” Jordan said, adding that his family had not entered the building at the freeway stop and were expecting to go to a part of the beach that is not crowded.

Another family spoke to CTV News Toronto on the way to the cottage.

“I’m going to the chalet to help Grandpa,” said seven-year-old Hannah Morin.

“My father lives in the north, he needs help organizing things,” said his mother Amber Ivians, adding that he lives alone.

“We’re not going to town. We’re not doing anything. We’re literally in our car to get there.”

When asked about people coming to the cottage to socialize over the long weekend while ordering to stay home, Ivins said she thought everything was fine “if it was done right”.

“At the same time, maybe you shouldn’t. As long as you’re safe, wearing a mask, doing what you’re supposed to do, I think you’re fine.


About Jermaine Chase

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