Executive summary

The Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID‑19) Act, 2020 (ROA) was proclaimed into force on July 24, 2020. It continued certain orders that had been made under section 7.0.2 or section 7.1 of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) during the first provincial emergency declared in response to COVID‑19, which lasted from March 17, 2020, to July 24, 2020.

The ROA provides that orders continued under the Act cease to apply after 30 days unless extended by the Lieutenant Governor in Council (LGIC). The ROA authorizes the LGIC to, by order, extend the effective period of an order for periods of no more than 30 days. The ROA also authorizes the LGIC to, by order, amend certain orders under the Act subject to conditions and limitations. However, the ROA does not provide the power to create new orders nor reinstate an order that has expired or been revoked.

The ROA provides that the powers of the LGIC to extend and amend orders under the Act cease on the first anniversary of the day the orders were continued under the Act, namely July 24, 2021. The ROA authorizes the Legislative Assembly, on the recommendation of the Premier, to, by resolution, extend the expiry date of these powers for additional periods of no more than one year.

On May 31, 2021, the Legislative Assembly extended the powers of the LGIC to extend and amend orders under the ROA to the end of the day on December 1, 2021. On November 23, 2021, the Legislative Assembly further extended those powers to the end of the day on March 28, 2022.

This extension ensured orders in effect under the ROA could continue to be extended and amended as necessary to maintain public health measures to respond to the ongoing effects of COVID‑19.

The ROA requires the Premier to table a report in the Legislative Assembly within 120 days after the end of any extension period of the LGIC’s powers to extend and amend orders under the Act. The report must provide the rationale for recommending the extension of these powers and address orders that were amended or extended during the extension period, along with the rationale for those extensions and amendments, including how any applicable conditions and limitations on the making of the amendments were satisfied.

This report outlines the 27 orders that were extended, revoked, or amended under the ROA during the reporting period from December 2, 2021, to March 28, 2022. Of those 27 orders, 16 were last extended until the first instant of April 27, 2022, with the other orders being revoked on earlier dates.

The ROA permits the extension of orders under the Act for periods of up to 30 days while the power of the LGIC to extend these orders remains in effect, even if the effective period of an order extends beyond the expiry of the LGIC’s powers. Before the LGIC’s powers expired at the end of the day on March 28, 2022, certain orders were extended to April 27, 2022, as the powers in those orders remained necessary to respond to the effects of COVID‑19 based on the circumstances at the time.

This report describes the conditions, due to COVID‑19, that led the Premier to recommend the extension of the LGIC’s powers under the ROA from December 2, 2021, to the end of the day on March 28, 2022, and provides the rationale for the extension and amendment of orders during this period of time.

As of April 27, 2022, all orders under the ROA have been revoked.

Structure of the report

This report is organized into three sections:

1. Orders intended to limit the spread of COVID‑19

These orders provided the government and employers with the flexibility to address the ongoing risks and effects of COVID‑19, including to protect vulnerable populations.

  1. O. Reg. 363/20 (Steps of Reopening)
  2. O. Reg. 82/20 (Rules for Areas in Shutdown Zone and at Step 1)
  3. O. Reg. 263/20 (Rules for Areas in Step 2)
  4. O. Reg. 364/20 (Rules for Areas at Step 3 and at the Roadmap Exit Step)
  5. O. Reg. 114/20 (Enforcement of Orders)
  6. O. Reg. 210/20 (Management of Long-term Care Homes in Outbreak)
  7. O. Reg. 240/20 (Management of Retirement Homes in Outbreak)
  8. O. Reg. 141/20 (Temporary Health or Residential Facilities)
  9. O. Reg. 116/20 (Work Deployment Measures for Boards of Health)
  10. O. Reg. 163/20 (Work Deployment Measures for Mental Health and Addictions Agencies)
  11. O. Reg. 156/20 (Deployment of Employees of Service Provider Organizations)
  12. O. Reg. 74/20 (Work Redeployment for Certain Health Services Providers)
  13. O. Reg. 193/20 (Hospital Credentialing Processes)
  14. O. Reg. 118/20 (Work Deployment Measures in Retirement Homes)
  15. O. Reg. 77/20 (Work Deployment Measures in Long-Term Care Homes)
  16. O. Reg. 121/20 (Service Agencies Providing Services and Supports to Adults with Developmental Disabilities and Service Providers Providing Intervenor Services)
  17. O. Reg. 145/20 (Work Deployment Measures for Service Agencies Providing Violence Against Women Residential Services and Crisis Line Services)
  18. O. Reg. 157/20 (Work Deployment Measures for Municipalities)
  19. O. Reg. 154/20 (Work Deployment Measures for District Social Services Administration Boards)
  20. O. Reg. 177/20 (Congregate Care Settings)
  21. O. Reg. 146/20 (Limiting Work to a Single Long-Term Care Home)
  22. O. Reg. 158/20 (Limiting Work to a Single Retirement Home)

2. Orders intended to support the continuity of critical services

These orders supported the ability to maintain critical services while managing the effects of COVID‑19, including addressing potential service gaps and reducing administrative requirements.

  1. O. Reg. 76/20 (Electronic Service)
  2. O. Reg. 195/20 (Treatment of Temporary COVID‑19 Related Payments to Employees)
  3. O. Reg. 95/20 (Streamlining Requirements for Long-Term Care Homes)

3. Orders intended to support businesses and provide cost relief to Ontarians

These orders protected Ontarians from price gouging for necessary goods and allowed municipalities to expedite passing or modifying temporary-use bylaws to support businesses.  

  1. O. Reg. 98/20 (Prohibition on Certain Persons Charging Unconscionable Prices for Sales of Necessary Goods)
  2. O. Reg. 345/20 (Patios)