Why are other communities surrounding us able to open their pools and provide daycamps?
The decision to open and close pools or daycamps lies with the Medical Officer of Health (MOH) for that health unit region. Each MOH decides what is best for their region and community and have the authority to do so by the Province of Ontario under Section 22 of the Health Protection and Promotion Act.
If camps and pools can open in a city like Toronto who were in not allowed to proceed into Stage 2 immediately, why can't we?
Toronto Public Health is in a different regional and administrative jurisdiction than Chatham-Kent Public Health. Although our case count is low, COVID-19 is still active in the community and it is important to continue following important public health measures. During the May 11 Municipality of Chatham-Kent Council Meeting, Council moved to close pools. On June 12, Dr. David Colby (Chatham-Kent Medical Officer of Health) enacted his signed medical order to close municipally operated pools.
Dr. Colby states that "Keeping pools, splash pads and day camps closed at this time is to protect the health and safety of children and vulnerable people as physical distancing will be impossible to maintain in these settings."
What is the difference between opening a daycamp and day care?
Child care facilities are highly regulated and inspected, whereas day camps are not. Child care facilities are governed and licensed by the Ministry of Education, and there is significant legislation that they have to follow (the Child Care and Early Years Act). They also receive annual infection control inspections by public health inspectors, as required by the legislation. Day camps are short term for a specified duration, and they are not subject to the same legislative requirements as child care facilities.
Day camps have always been my only source of child care in the summer, what other options will there be?
Child care facilities have been permitted to open in Chatham-Kent by Dr. Colby, if you are requiring child care outside of daycamps. Please consult your child care provider for more information, or join the Chatham-Kent Childcare Registry if you are seeking child care.
Why are we remaining closed, our cases have been so low?
Although CK's case count is low, COVID-19 is still active and it is important to continue following important public health measures. A swimming pool or daycamp operation would be difficult for individuals to physically distance from each other, creating a risk for the community.
Lifeguards are ready and available to work – why are you not opening pools in a modified manner – Toronto and other communities are opening pools with approval and meeting strict health regulations.
During the May 11 Municipality of Chatham-Kent Council Meeting, Council moved to close pools and suspend the hiring of summer students in the Recreation Department, as with many other departments. On June 12, Dr. David Colby (Chatham-Kent Medical Officer of Health) enacted his signed medical order to close municipally operated pools. A swimming pool or daycamp operation would be difficult for individuals to physically distance from each other, creating a risk for the community.