Emergency Order allows first responders to access COVID-19 positive status information

Certain strict safeguards will be implemented to restrict access to the disclosed data

Emergency Order allows first responders to access COVID-19 positive status information

In light of the pandemic, first responders can find out whether the people with whom they come into contact have received positive COVID-19 test results.

Under the emergency order issued by the provincial government, other information disclosed to these police, firefighters and paramedics include the names, addresses and birthdates of these people with whom they interact as a part of their jobs.

“First responders put their lives on the line every day to protect Ontarians and they are at great risk of being directly exposed to COVID-19 as they fulfill their frontline duties,” said a statement issued by Christine Elliott, Deputy Premier and Minister of Health, and Sylvia Jones, Solicitor General.

These measures are intended not only to ensure the safety of such first responders but also to help prevent the spread of the virus and to protect the health of all Ontarians.

Certain strict safeguards will be implemented to restrict access to the disclosed data. Once the declaration of emergency has been lifted, first responders will be prevented from continuing to access such information.

The provincial government also approved an earlier emergency order that gave provincial offences officers the temporary power to require individuals charged with offences under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act to disclose identifying information, including their correct names, birthdates and addresses. The prior emergency order likewise aims to help the government more effectively protect Ontarians during this public health crisis.

Other measures have been introduced to protect frontline justice staff who continue delivering essential services amid the COVID-19 crisis.

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