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Medical Officer of Health issues order for Mennonite communities

The Section 22 Class Order is being issued to enable enforcement actions to slow the spread of COVID-19
hsiu-li wang
Photo via @ROWPublicHealth/Twitter

Waterloo Region's Medical Officer of Health has issued another Section 22 Class Order, this one covers local Mennonite communities.

It was issued on Monday afternoon to members of the Old Order, Markham, Old Colony, and David Martin Mennonite communities.

It also takes effect immediately.

The health department is doing so to to enable enforcement actions, when appropriate, to slow the spread of COVID-19 in those communities.

The order also prohibits social gatherings in or on a private residence with people outside of a person’s immediate household.

"Discussions are occurring with community leaders to enable an orderly closure of schools and church settings (except to allow for things such as funerals with a small number of people in attendance) in these communities by Wednesday, December 2. An order to this effect will be forthcoming and will be effective December 2, 2020." a news release also stated.

Health officials are concerned about the rising number of COVID cases among members of the Mennonite community.

“We have benefited from the support of community leaders and many individual members of these Mennonite communities. Unfortunately, we have encountered insufficient cooperation among a number of individuals with public health requirements, including the requirements to self-isolate, not attend work when sick, and identify high-risk contacts for Public Health,” said Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang. “As a result, orders are being issued as the risk to the community as a whole, as well as to other people with whom community members interact, has become too high.”

Under the order, those who do not comply can be given a $750 ticket or a Part III summons with fines reaching up to $5,000 per day.

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