Waterloo Region - The Ontario government has released details of a cautious and gradual easing of public health measures, starting on January 31, 2022.

In the absence of concerning trends in public health and health care indicators, Ontario will follow a cautious and phased approach to lifting public health measures, with 21 days between each step.

The first phase is scheduled to commence on January 31 and includes:

  • Increasing social gathering limits to 10 people indoors and 25 people outdoors.
  • Increasing or maintaining capacity limits at 50 per cent in indoor public settings, including but not limited to:
  • Restaurants, bars and other food or drink establishments without dance facilities;
  • Retailers (including grocery stores and pharmacies)
  • Shopping malls;
  • Non-spectator areas of sports and recreational fitness facilities, including gyms;
  • Cinemas;
  • Meeting and event spaces;
  • Recreational amenities and amusement parks, including water parks;
  • Museums, galleries, aquariums, zoos and similar attractions; and
  • Casinos, bingo halls and other gaming establishments
  • Religious services, rites, or ceremonies.

Individual municipalities will provide updates on service changes, please check their websites for more details.

“With the anticipated loosening of some restrictions in Ontario beginning on January 31st, we all need to move forward cautiously to protect our progress and avoid going backwards,” said Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang. “As restrictions are loosened, it remains as important as ever to follow public health measures and receive a vaccine.”

Information for residents:

Residents can book a vaccine at www.regionofwaterloo.ca/GetAVaccine

For settings that require proof of vaccination, residents can download an enhanced vaccine certificate with official QR code. Residents can use a printed or digital copy and valid personal ID is required to confirm identity.

Note that settings that require proof of vaccination will no longer accept physician notes. For information on how to get an enhanced certificate with QR code for those with a medical or clinical trial exemption, visit the Ontario website.

Residents are reminded to be mindful of feelings of isolation. If you or someone you know needs help, remember that local mental health support is available.

Local, professional mental health support is available from Here 24/7 at 1-844-437-3247.

For more information on today’s announcement, visit the Province of Ontario website.