The YMCA of North Bay is thankful for the continued support as it shares with members and visitors its new protocols as the Ontario government's proof of vaccination program takes effect Wednesday, September 22.
The YMCA will be required to ask all those over 12 years of age, whether they are members, participants or contractors to provide proof of their vaccination status and government-issued photo ID. Effective Wednesday, Ontarians will need to be fully vaccinated with two doses with 14 days since the second dose.
Anyone seeking access to the YMCA is asked to stop and check in at the membership services desk. The YMCA will accept either digital or paper proof of vaccination and anticipates it will eventually be able to accept QR codes when that part of the program is released by the Government of Ontario.
Without proof of vaccination or a valid medical or religious exemption, no entry will be permitted by members, participants or spectators. Entrants must provide proof of vaccination upon each visit to the YMCA. Members that are unvaccinated should contact the YMCA to put memberships on hold. The YMCA continues to offer online health and exercise classes to members.
Ontario says, "Requiring proof of vaccination in these settings reduces risk and is an important step to encourage every last eligible Ontarian to get their shot, which is critical to protecting the province’s hospital capacity, while also supporting businesses with the tools they need to keep customers safe, stay open and minimize disruptions," in a statement introducing the proof of vaccination requirement.
For frequently asked questions on the new requirement by Ontario for proof of vaccination in certain settings, click here.
Ontario says this approach focuses on higher-risk indoor public settings, such as the YMCA, where face coverings cannot always be worn, including:
- Restaurants and bars (excluding outdoor patios, as well as delivery and takeout);
- Nightclubs (including outdoor areas of the establishment);
- Meeting and event spaces, such as banquet halls and conference/convention centres;
- Facilities used for sports and fitness activities and personal fitness training, such as gyms, fitness and recreational facilities with the exception of youth recreational sport;
- Sporting events;
- Casinos, bingo halls and gaming establishments;
- Concerts, music festivals, theatres and cinemas;
- Strip clubs, bathhouses and sex clubs;
- Racing venues (e.g., horse racing).
These mandatory requirements would not apply to outdoor settings where the risk of transmission is lower, including patios, with the exception of outdoor nightclub spaces given the risk associated with the setting. In addition, these requirements will not apply to settings where people receive medical care, food from grocery stores, medical supplies and the like. Aligned with public health measures currently in place, indoor masking policies will continue to remain in place.