City of Kingston declares State Of Emergency due to COVID-19

Photo by Tommy Vallier.

At 1 p.m. today, Mayor Bryan Paterson declared a State of Emergency for Kingston to help contain the spread of COVID-19. This decision aligns with steps the Province of Ontario has taken in response to the pandemic.

“As the COVID-19 situation evolves, we’re evolving with it. Declaring a state of emergency is not something I take lightly,” says Mayor Paterson. “This is about making sure we’re taking every step possible to support our community during this challenging time. We need access to any and all resources available and this declaration provides more flexibility to take local action.  Let’s continue to do our part to flatten the curve by acting on the advice of our public health officials by staying home, leaving only if necessary, and practicing physical distancing.”

With evidence of community spread of COVID-19 in the KFL&A region, it has been determined an emergency exists that places residents at risk.

The declaration of an emergency, under Section 4 (1) of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, allows the City to use all available options to protect the health, safety and welfare of its residents. The state of emergency is effective immediately, and will remain in effect until further notice.

“We must act now to address this serious public health threat,” says Dr. Kieran Moore, Medical Officer of Health at KFL&A Public Health. “This situation clearly illustrates the highly contagious nature of COVID-19 and emphasizes the importance of practicing physical distancing and self-isolation in order to control the community spread of the virus,” adds Moore.


Acting decisively as a community, can help maintain the safety and well-being of residents.  Residents should follow the advice of the Public Health Unit to help alleviate pressures on the healthcare system, and best protect themselves and loved ones. Precautions to prevent transmission include:

–          self-isolation,

–          maintaining at least a 2 metre distance from others,

–          avoiding all unnecessary travel,

–          washing hands often, and

–          regularly disinfecting high touch zones in shared spaces in your home.

For more information on precautions you should be taking, please consult KFL&A Public Health.


The City has adapted the way it delivers many services to minimize the risk to residents and staff. Although municipal offices are closed to the public, essential services continue to be provided. Essential services continue to be provided, including:  Emergency Services, the Rideaucrest Long-Term Care Home, Social Services, waste collection, and all other City services.

“This declaration is not meant to stir up panic. It’s meant to trigger action,” says Mayor Paterson. “Our decisions have a real impact. Please, do your part. Listen to our health professionals. Stay at home. Practice physical distancing. And together, we’ll get through this.” 

15 thoughts on “City of Kingston declares State Of Emergency due to COVID-19

  • Why does the City of Kingston website still say Risk level remains low (March 26) – The risk of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) is currently low for our area. “?

    • The risk level remains low, because it still is. This is based on the number of reported cases in the community. It doesn’t mean that everything is back to normal, or you should ignore the social distancing recommendations.

    • I can’t believe that the city of Kingston still has many people going into work for a non essential business.
      The rec and leisure departments who need to go to swimming pools right now?
      Get on the band wagon people.
      Pools are breading ground for germs…
      Arena workers and cashiers still working, how does this fall into essential?.
      To they not have to abide by the provinces rules??.

  • There are a lot of us who have to get out to get food…..and there are a couple of places willing to help you get it by delivering it……Facebook has: Acts of Kindness….just go in there and state your need. They helped me out tremendously. I’m a senior and they get a kind of priority. The other is: Mutual Aid Katarokwi Grocery Match and boy they sure are movers and shakers….so give them a try.

  • Hopefully ones at dog parks will take heed as two days ago at the community center there was at least 6 or more dog owners there with their dogs and were not practicing physical distancing , also some ignore the distance assigned at the stores . I really pray that everyone understands how not following guide lines effects the lives of their family let alone other people in their community .

  • What is the action that should be triggered? More details please.

    • Very disappointed to see that the 3rd crossing workers are still going to work every day. Kind of hypocritical to declare a state of emergency but you still want to keep he guys working on the bridge

  • If there is a work place not complying with these health advisories how does one go about reporting this? Are there consequences for when places that are not practicing social distancing/proper sanitizing and basically creating unsafe working conditions?

    • yes governments released businesses not following social distancing and remaining open after closures specified by ministry of health will receive fines upwards 500K+

  • And yet you have reduced bus service to make the buses more overcrowded and people can’t social distance for us that have to still go to work.

  • I get the urgency of the Covid-19 and happy we are finally in a State of Emergency. However, still idiots out there. One example is I just read the pit bull attack on a man. I’ve seen similar situation with an idiot walking his dogs not on a leash for over a Year now and have seen dog fights because of this. Please keep your dogs on a leash, there are signs posted.

  • Will Ford govt make cupe educational workers suffer by laying them off as well? Just like the Alberta govt did, despite saying the opposite week before?

    • FYI. Ford government has passed decision on to local school boards, which I suppose means that our school board trustees play a role in decision making.

      That said, though nothing official yet, expectation is that all casual workers ( supply teachers/EAs/other casual workers) are laid off, despite Doug Ford announcing government workers will be paid and that no-one should have to worry about their rent, etc at this time.

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