TORONTO — Four Ontario regions still under a stay-at-home order will learn on Friday whether the province will go ahead with its plan to loosen public health restrictions next week.

Health Minister Christine Elliott says cabinet will meet in the morning to discuss recommendations from the province’s top doctor.

She says the public will learn of cabinet’s decision for Toronto, Peel Region, York Region and North Bay Parry Sound later in the day.

Medical officers of health for Toronto and Peel have asked Ontario’s top doctor to keep the stay-at-home order in place until at least March 9.

Elliott says the province is taking the request seriously and carefully considering it.

York Region’s medical officer of health has asked Dr. David Williams to place the region in the red zone, which has the second-strictest set of rules under the province’s colour-coded framework.

York, Peel, Toronto and North Bay Parry Sound are the four outstanding regions that have yet to move from the stay-at-home order back to the original framework.

The Progressive Conservative government has defended its decision to proceed with loosening restrictions for most of the province despite warnings it might set off a third wave.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 18, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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