Toronto Mayor John Tory says it will delay return of workers to the office until Jan. 20

Toronto Mayor John Tory says it will delay return of workers to the office until Jan. 20

Toronto sets January date for city workers to return to the office, amid rising COVID-19 cases, Omicron uncertainty.

Toronto has decided to delay the return of workers to the office, in compliance with government orders and in the interests of public health, Mayor John Tory said Thursday.

City Hall employees will remain on home work for a maximum of four weeks, from Friday until a new working arrangement is in place that he hopes will bring back some sense of normality.

“This decision was difficult, but necessary,” Tory said at an afternoon news conference.

“We need our city employees to focus on preventing further spread of the virus, and making sure they are well.”

The decision comes on the heels of a second day of warnings from Ontario’s chief medical officer of medics about the continued spread of COVID-19 in Toronto.

The latest update from Dr. David Williams, who is also the province’s chief medical officer of health, called on all employers to allow their workers to work remotely during the COVID epidemic.

Speaking Thursday, Williams said the city’s decision to not allow any more employees back to the office until at least Jan. 20 is “not at all unreasonable.”

But, he told reporters it is reasonable not to allow the employees to work there during the outbreak.

Williams said that despite these limitations, the city should try to maintain the current level of services.

“Certainly, a more restrictive approach to return to the office and to the work site would cause further disruption to business,” Williams said.

He also said there have been no instances of employee illness so far while their co-workers have been working remotely.

Tory himself said: “I hope people get this clear: we need to maintain our business as we are doing so now. For me, it’s a matter of, what will we lose if we do let people come back into the office, and why wouldn’t we?


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