Office of Councillor Jeff Leiper, Kitchissippi Ward, Ottawa | (613) 580-2485  |
Responsive image

Guidance from Ottawa Public Health: please stay home

You are here

Good evening, Kitchissippi. Councillors have received some further guidance from Ottawa Public Health this afternoon to the effect that our public health officials are now asking everyone to please stay home as much as possible. Please, let's help slow the spread of Covid-19: stay home if you can.

Continue to stay abreast of updates to the OPH website at There's more details on the dos and don'ts of social distancing on their site here:…/self-isolation-instruct…


Dear Mayor and Councillors,

I am writing to share information about a significant shift in messaging about the COVID-19 response that I will be sharing with the public this afternoon.

Following the first travel-related case detected in Ottawa last week, and with increased access to testing through the out-of-hospital COVID-19 Assessment Centre that opened on Friday, we now have 10 confirmed cases in our City. This number shows us that there are likely more travel-related cases that have gone on to cause local transmission of the virus in Ottawa. Since these cases are related to travel that occurred in the past, travel restrictions and the federal government’s advice for all international travelers to self-isolate for 14 days were not in place. Given the estimate that one case is likely to cause about two more, and the doubling time is 4-5 days, there could now be hundreds to even a thousand cases in the community now.

Therefore, I am asking all people in Ottawa to increase their practices of social distancing. This means limiting non-essential trips out of the home and working to maintain a distance of 1-2 meters from other people as much as possible. We are asking people to keep their children home from daycare if possible and to check with their employers about options for working from home or implementing distancing at work.

I know there will be many questions and significant hardship associated with strong implementation of these measures. People will wonder if they are necessary. Unless we act now to limit COVID-19 transmission in our community, we will not be able to keep the numbers who require hospital treatment all at once to a manageable number. We each need to do our part to ensure that our healthcare providers do not have to choose between who lives and who dies due to a lack of capacity to care for the most vulnerable people. Social distancing measures can make a huge difference to limit the rapid spread of illness.

Ottawa Public Health will be increasing the detail in our messaging on our website related to social distancing to provide further guidance to the public. Please continue to share this information. We continue to work in concert with our provincial and federal public health colleagues and not all websites can keep up with rapidly changing information. We will share what is happening in our community on our website.

Posted March 15, 2020