TORONTO — The Ontario Construction Consortium (OCC) is calling on the provincial government to immediately suspend restrictions that have slowed the construction industry.
In early January Ontario Premier Doug Ford declared a second state of emergency and issued a stay-at-home order that went into effect on Jan. 14. The order brought with it additional restrictions to the construction industry, shutting down many projects that weren’t tied to infrastructure or health care and deemed essential.
Construction began resuming in the ICI sector as early as Feb. 10 in three regions in eastern Ontario and most of the rest of the province on Feb. 16 as 30 public health regions transitioned from the province-wide lockdown into the colour-coded COVID-19 Response Framework. But the lockdown continues in the Greater Toronto Area.
OCC executive director Phil Gillies said in a release it’s time to lift all restrictions on construction in the GTA.
“Enough is enough,” Gillies said. “Construction contractors have gone to great expense providing personal protective equipment to employees and providing sanitary washroom facilities on worksites.”
He added, “The construction industry contributed eight per cent of Canada’s GDP and employed more than 1.2 million people in 2019. It is essential that the government do everything it can to support this vital segment of the economy. That begins with allowing all construction to resume immediately, especially in the GTA, Canada’s largest market.”