By Xenia Kobori
On December 15, University of Toronto announced that due to the Omicron outbreak, in-person learning would be delayed until January 31. In response, Trinity and other colleges around campus offered room and board reimbursement packages to students who delayed their return back to campus. Yet now as Omicron subsides, the University of Toronto and the city of Toronto has made strides to return back to normal.
On January 31, indoor dining was restored in Toronto, as well as the Strachan and Buttery dining halls, at 50% capacity. Then on February 7, most classes returned to in-person learning, with some exceptions based on faculty or professor. This return has made students and Ontario residents ecstatic to return back to a more normal pace of life, which had been obstructed by the recent outbreak. Trinity student Jessica Vertlib explained, “I’m really grateful for the opportunity that the University of Toronto has allowed me to attend in person lectures again and continue to meet new people!”
In Toronto, and Ontario as a whole, Premier Doug Ford is accelerating re-opening measures greatly. On January 31, indoor public settings returned to 50% capacity for event areas like restaurants, cinemas, museums, and meeting spaces. However, as part of this stage of reopening, patrons at bars, nightclubs, or places where you can dance, must be seated. On February 21, these restrictions will loosen further to allow 100% capacity limits for the indoor spaces mentioned above, while establishments with dance capacity will open up dancefloors at 25% capacity. Finally, on March 14 all capacity limits will be lifted.
Despite this growing return to normalcy, there are still COVID measures that must be followed, both in the city and at the UofT. These include continuing to wear your mask at indoor spaces at UofT, completing your UCheck before entering campus buildings, and showing your UCheck before sitting down to eat in the dining halls. Likewise when going out in the city, masks and proof of vaccination will still be required.
After the period of uncertainty that the Omicron outbreak provided for students and Canadians everywhere, it is refreshing to see Ontario and UofT return back to a more normal way of life. It is important to adhere to these guidelines to ensure a smooth return back to the typical way of life pre-covid. Until then, stay safe Trinity students and enjoy the loosening restrictions!