The North Bay Police made it very clear that they will not be randomly stopping pedestrians or drivers after the latest COVID-19 regulations were released on Friday.
"As we review the new regulations please note that the North Bay Police will not be conducting random vehicle or individual stops," the North Bay Police stated Via Twitter on Saturday.
The North Bay Police Service was one of many Ontario municipal police services that stated they would not be making those random stops.
The announcement of new #COVID19 provincial enforcement measures have generated many questions in our community.— North Bay Police (@NorthBayPolice) April 17, 2021
As we review the new provincial regulations, please note that #NorthBay Police will NOT be conducting random vehicle or individual stops.
However, the province backed off on that decision due to the backlash.
On the weekend, Solicitor General Sylvia Jones stated that officers will no longer have the right to stop pedestrians or drivers to ask why they are out or request their home address.
Instead, she says, police will only be able to stop people who they have reason to believe are participating in an "organized public event or social gathering."
The Ontario Provincial Police outlined what they will be enforcing.
"OPP officers will enforce the Stay-at-Home Order, under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMPCA), and the Reopening Ontario Act (ROA) by focusing on non-compliance in businesses and restaurants, complaints from the public and unlawful public gatherings. Officers can disperse and ticket individuals found to be non-compliant resulting in a $750 fine," an OPP release stated.
The OPP added that outdoor events/gatherings are now prohibited unless all parties are from the same household or one other person from outside that household who lives alone or is a caregiver for any member of the household.
Consistent with the new emergency orders, OPP officers will not arbitrarily stop an individual or a vehicle, or enter a dwelling for the singular purpose of checking compliance with the order. Individuals are not expected to provide proof of essential work.
Officers who believe an individual may be participating in a gathering that is prohibited may require the individual to provide information to determine whether or not they are in compliance.
More information about the restrictions covered by the Government of Ontario's declared 'State of Emergency' and the updated enforcement provisions of the EMCPA can be found at Reopening Ontario Act (A Flexible Response to COVID-19; ROA), 2020.