Protecting yourself and others
Learn more about COVID-19 and how to stay safe.
COVID-19 is a respiratory disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Learn more about COVID-19 from the Public Health Agency of Canada.
Get more information from the Ontario government about the latest public health measures and advice.
All viruses, including the virus that causes COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2), change over time, and it’s common for new variants to appear. Public Health Ontario provides information on COVID-19 variants of concern as well as daily and weekly summary reports.
Access COVID-19 related posters and other resources for use in workplaces and in the community in multiple languages.
COVID-19 can spread from an infected person to others through respiratory particles, or by direct contact. COVID-19 is spread most often and easily at short range, and with extended close contact.
No one thing on its own is 100% effective at preventing the spread of COVID-19 but layering public health measures provides the best protection.
Layers of protection include:
- Staying up to date with your vaccinations.
- Staying home when sick.
- Washing your hands frequently.
- Practicing proper respiratory etiquette by covering coughs and sneezes.
- Using a high-quality mask when necessary.
- Maintaining good ventilation in indoor spaces (e.g., opening windows).
Mandatory masking requirements in most public settings have been removed by the Ontario government.
In certain circumstances, you may still need to wear a mask. If you have COVID-19, it's recommended that for 10 days after your symptoms begin or you test positive, you should:
- Continue to wear a well-fitted mask in all public settings (including schools and child care unless under 2 years old).
- Avoid non-essential activities where removing your mask is necessary.
Businesses and other settings may also choose to continue requiring patrons and employees to wear a mask. Refer to Ontario's public health measures and advice for more information.
Peel Public Health’s current guidance on wearing masks is in line with the Ontario government. Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health recommends that you continue to wear a well-fitted three-layer mask or use a medical mask in all public indoor settings.
You can learn more from the Government of Canada on mask use in community settings.
Remember to remain kind, considerate and respectful of everyone, regardless of whether they choose to wear a mask or not.
Peel Public Health continues to recommend that all employers review their workplace safety plans for measures to protect employees from COVID-19.
Workplaces can refer to information from the Ontario government about COVID-19 and workplace health and safety and COVID-19 and the Occupational Health and Safety Act for information on requirements and best practices for workplace safety.
Employers can also refer to more information from the Ontario government on vaccination and COVID-19 workplace control measures. Employers should seek their own legal counsel related to their workplace's vaccination policy.
Workplaces should also review or establish new sick leave policies that are supportive to their employees and help control the spread of COVID-19 in workplaces.
Managing COVID-19 cases in the workplace
Based on direction from the Ontario government on case, contact and outbreak management, Peel Public Health will support workplaces that are highest risk settings.
Currently, highest risk settings include:
- Acute care settings such as hospitals and complex continuing care facilities.
- Congregate living settings with medically and socially vulnerable individuals. Including, but not limited to long term care homes, retirement homes, First Nation elder care lodges, group homes, shelters, hospices, correctional institutions, and hospital schools.
- Employer-provided living settings of international agricultural workers.
If your workplace is a highest risk setting and you have a suspect or confirmed outbreak, notify Peel Public Health at 905-799-7700.
All workplaces can refer to the following resources for additional information about potential COVID-19 illness or exposure at work:
- Ontario's Occupational Health and Safety Act guidance for employers.
- Public Health Ontario's COVID-19 workplace infection prevention and control practices.
- Peel Public Health's information for individuals who have COVID-19, symptoms of COVID-19, or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19.
Since March 2020, the Region of Peel has issued several Class Orders and Letters of Instruction to address local needs in the community to control COVID-19 transmission. All COVID-19 Orders and Letters of Instruction have been rescinded at this time. Employers should seek legal counsel as required for any specific circumstances related to their workplace.
Copies of rescinded Orders, Letters of Instruction and relevant Letters of Rescission are available upon request by calling Peel Public Health at 905-799-7700 (Caledon 905-584-2216) Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.