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Ontario Vaccination Passports not required for take-out, washrooms at OnRoute

Travellers will not be required to provide proof of vaccination to get take out food or use the washrooms at OnRoute plazas. Photo: RWN

As of this morning, September 22nd, proof of two vaccinations and photo identification are required in Ontario to visit specific non-essential businesses including dine-in restaurants, nightclubs and gyms. 

However, Diana McLeod of OnRoute, which operates 23 plazas on the 401 and 400 series highways in Ontario, tells Road Warrior News that “Consistent with public health guidance, travellers will not be required to provide proof of vaccination in order to visit our facility to use the restroom or purchase items for takeout or consumption on our outdoor patio (while in operation).”

Bill Campbell, media spokesperson for Ontario’s Ministry of Health notes that “As per the  announcement, as of September 22, 2021, patrons who want to access indoor areas of restaurants, bars and other food or drink establishments must show proof of identification and of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 in accordance with (the Act).” Campbell wrote in an email to RWN.

“This does not apply to individuals who enter the indoor area for takeout or delivery service.

“The requirement also does not apply to a patron who is entering an indoor area solely:

  • to use a washroom;
  • to access an outdoor area that can only be accessed through an indoor route;
  • to make a retail purchase;
  • while placing or picking up an order;
  • while paying for an order; or
  • as may be necessary for the purposes of health and safety.”

Individuals visiting from outside the province will be required to show their full vaccination status and identification to enter prescribed settings such as eat-in restaurants or night clubs. Ontario says it will develop and provide additional and business supports in the coming weeks, including ensuring verification of fully vaccinated individuals from outside of province or country.

As has been found with all restaurants contacted by Road Warrior News, there continues to be confusion over what this means for restaurant clientele.

The 14-page Guidance Document for businesses released September 14th indicates that restaurant staff are required to:

  1. Match the name and the date of birth of the patron listed on the vaccination receipt against the name and date of birth on a piece of identification.
  2. Verify the receipt is either

(a) an Ontario receipt issued at the time of vaccination or any format of receipt downloaded from Ontario.ca that shows the holder is fully vaccinated against COVID-19

(b) a receipt signed by an Indigenous Health Provider, or

(c) a receipt from another jurisdiction that shows the holder is fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

  1. Verify that the receipt shows that the holder is fully vaccinated.
  2. Verify that the date of administration of the final shot in the series is at least fourteen days prior to the date the patron is seeking access to the business or organization

UPDATE 12:00 noon September 22nd: At this morning’s press conference, Richard from 680NEWS asked Premier Ford, “What criteria will you use to lift the Vaccine Passport?”

Ford replied, “I will rely on the advice of Public Health Officials….I cannot give you a date.”

Ford did not provide any further example of “criteria.”