VANCOUVER – Like many other provinces, Manitoba has seen its COVID-19 case numbers drop drastically compared to the fall. And starting Friday, many businesses are being allowed to open for the first time in months.
That includes restaurants — which had been limited to takeout and delivery, museums, libraries, tattoo parlours, and gyms, though many may find it hard to turn a profit with the 25 per cent capacity limit imposed on businesses for the time being.
“The unfortunate reality in our industry of 25 per cent is that all business operators, all restaurants that will be opening up at that capacity limit will be opening up to be losing money,” says Shaun Jeffrey with the Manitoba Restaurant and Food Services Association.
Jeffrey notes another limiting factor is a new requirement to only have people from the same household sitting at a table together.
“That eliminates a lot of lunch business because that’s really the majority of lunch business would be business-related. So in your office or friends and so forth. So it really leaves, you know, your dinner and your breakfast volume,” he adds.
Outdoor gatherings in Manitoba are still limited to five people and households are allowed two designated visitors indoors.
Meanwhile, in Ontario, Premier Doug Ford’s government is set to announce re-opening plans for more areas of the province Friday.
Toronto and neighbouring York and Peel Regions will stay under current restrictions for now.