Point Edward, ON – Lambton Public Health (LPH) is introducing additional proof of vaccination requirements for all facilities used for sports and recreational fitness activities in the County of Lambton. Proof of vaccination will be required for anyone over the age of 12 who enters an indoor area of this type of facility to participate in, coach, officiate or watch an organized sporting event.
The new mandate officially comes into effect at 12:01 a.m. on October 31, when individuals 12 years of age and older must show identification and proof of vaccination for a first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. By November 30, all individuals aged 12+ must show identification and proof of full vaccination (two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine plus 14 days following the second dose).
“We are in the midst of a fourth wave of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dr. Sudit Ranade, Medical Officer of Health for the County of Lambton. “In Lambton County, the risk of a COVID-19 infection is 7 times higher for people that are unvaccinated, and unvaccinated people over 60 years of age are 28.4 times more likely to be hospitalized than those who are vaccinated.”
Activities related to organized sports, particularly contact sports and high intensity fitness and recreation, put participants at greater risk for COVID-19 transmission due to heavy breathing, close contact, length of contact and lack of personal protective equipment (face covering/mask). The risk is significantly increased when activities take place indoors.
“Requiring and verifying proof of vaccination for all people aged 12+ accessing indoor facilities used for sport and recreational fitness activities can greatly reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 and improve protection from the virus, limiting the spread in the community,” continued Dr. Ranade.
LPH issued a Letter of Instruction to the owners/operators of facilities used for sports and recreational fitness activities in Lambton County today. The letter was developed by the health unit under the authority outlined in the Reopening Ontario Act which requires proof of COVID-19 vaccination and identification for all those 18 years of age and older who actively participate in organized sports or recreational fitness programs. In addition to players, the Letter of Instruction applies to coaches, officials, volunteers and spectators aged 12 and over.
For the latest updates on the vaccine rollout, a schedule of upcoming vaccination clinics and a list of local pharmacies who are offering COVID-19 vaccines please go to getthevaccine.ca.