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Ontario patios are opening up, but singing and dancing are forbidden

Ontario is opening up patios across the province. But don't dream of singing or dancing to celebrate. The province says that's forbidden.
Barrett Wilson Montreal, QC

Ontario is opening up, and patios outside of Toronto will be open for people to enjoy on Friday. But don't dream of singing or dancing to celebrate. The province says that's forbidden.

According to Global, the province's guidance for Stage Two includes "explicit bans on singing – even dancing – in parts of its plan to reopen businesses temporarily shuttered by the deadly outbreak."

The explicit wording is: “no dancing or singing may be permitted in the outdoor dining areas.” Ontario documents also forbid singing in childcare and daycare settings and singing is strongly discouraged in places of worship.

“It’s gross to think about, but every time we talk, we’re spitting into the world around us,” Dr. Isaac Bogoch told Global.

“And if we’re singing, shouting or breathing heavily, we’re likely expelling more saliva and nasal secretions … and if someone’s infected, then those secretions will shed more virus.”

The guidance is based on data that show singing and dancing lead to a higher risk of the coronavirus spreading says Ministry of Health spokesperson Hayley Chazan. “Evidence indicates singing may involve a greater risk than normal speech, especially singing loudly,” she said.

James Rilett, VP of Restaurants Canada told Global that “Live music and dancing may be something that we look to revisit once Ontario is further along with easing emergency health and safety measures, but for now this restriction will not hinder reopening plans.”

So, remember: as you finally get to meet up with long-lost loved ones and enjoy a meal and a frosty cold beer on one of Ontario's many summer patios, don't express your joy in song or dance form. And don't you dare speak moistly.  

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Barrett Wilson
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