Ontario premier to make announcement Wednesday as COVID-19 certificate system kicks off

TORONTO — Ontario Premier Doug Ford is set to make an announcement on Wednesday as the province kicks off its COVID-19 passport system.

Health Minister Christine Elliott and Solicitor General Sylvia Jones will join the premier for the announcement at Queen’s Park. 

Ford and the ministers are expected to provide an update on Ontario’s vaccine rollout, as well as an update on the launch of the COVID-19 vaccination certificates.

Ontario’s new COVID-19 vaccine certificate system will now require patrons at dine-in restaurants, nightclubs, cinemas, gyms, sports facilities and other venues to present a receipt of full vaccination along with government identification.

Doctors’ notes for medical exemptions will be accepted. Businesses that don’t comply with the certificate program and patrons who give false information may be fined.

The province’s online web portal where proof of vaccination certificates are obtained and vaccine appointments are scheduled was down earlier this morning for a previously scheduled maintenance, which occurs almost weekly. 

The province says the website is usually unavailable each week for maintenance from 11 p.m. on Tuesday to 8 a.m. on Wednesday and from 11 p.m. on Saturday to 9 a.m. on Sunday.

In Ontario, more than 85 per cent of people aged 12 and up have at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine in the province, and about 79 per cent of the entire population have both doses.

CTVNewsToronto.ca will stream the announcement live at 11:30 a.m.

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