The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit is encouraging everyone to remain vigilant as we enter step one of the provincial reopening on Friday.

Dr. Jim Chirico, Medical Officer of Health, says it’s important that people continue to follow all of the general public health measures.

“Ensure that you are within gathering limits, wearing a face covering and keeping two-metre distancing,” he says.

The goal, according to Chirico, is for this to be our last shutdown.

“I think there are some very positive indicators within the province and within our district, and with the case numbers coming down and that’s all very, very encouraging.  But, we also have to really think about and use very good judgement with the loosened restrictions, because the variants are still there,” Chirico says.

Along with the reopening, the Health Unit has developed a Guide to Summer Activities website.

“This webpage will provide advice on various topics including how to host gatherings in a safer way, enjoy outdoor sports and activities, garage sales and more,” says Louise Gagné, Executive Director of Community Services. “We also have a new summer camp webpage under the COVID-19 section of the Health Unit’s website that will be updated regularly as we continue to move through the stages.”

The page provides day camp and overnight camp guidance for parents and camp operators.

Gagné also provided an update on outdoor graduation planning, saying they’re working with all four school boards.

She says they’re expected to be detailing their plans to the school communities as early as today.

“There are a number of options that the schools could look at in terms of hosting graduations and our school boards have chosen those that work best for their school community and will offer a unique experience for their students, but still adhere to public health measures,” she says.

The Health Unit is also reminding people not to leave kids or pets in their vehicles when getting their vaccinations at a local clinic.