‘Come on individuals:’ Tory says residents have torn down tape at shuttered parks services, knocked over indicators

Chris Fox, CP24.com

Revealed Sunday, March 29, 2020 eight:58AM EDT

Final Up to date Sunday, March 29, 2020 9:26AM EDT

Mayor John Tory is pleading with residents to respect the closure of playgrounds, sports activities courts and different services inside metropolis parks amid studies that some individuals have torn down signage and ripped off tape that was put as much as preserve individuals away amid the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic.

On Wednesday the town introduced the closure of all services situated inside the greater than 1,500 parks throughout Toronto, together with playgrounds, basketball courts, tennis courts and off-leash canine areas.

Since then, metropolis employees have fanned out throughout the town to place up signage and tape advising residents of the closure.

Tory, nevertheless, informed CP24 on Sunday morning that he’s starting to listen to studies of individuals pulling down indicators and tearing down tape in order that they will entry the services in contravention of the town order.

“I hear these things and I form of generally suppose it’s being made up however I do know that it’s not as a result of it our officers who’re telling me. Individuals are tearing down the indicators that we put within the parks to say that the facilities are closed. They’re tearing the indicators down and they’re taking the tape off,” he mentioned. “I imply come on individuals. We’re not doing this as a result of we are attempting to not be good. We’re doing this as a result of that is what the well being officers inform us we’ve got to do to cease Toronto from going within the course of New York Metropolis or worse. We simply can’t try this. It could contain lack of life for our fellow Torontonians, it might contain an enormous pressure on the healthcare system with many extra individuals changing into sick and it will contain this (the disruption to public life) lasting so much longer.”

Tory mentioned that he made the “troublesome choice” to shut all services inside metropolis parks solely on the premise of recommendation from public well being officers, who indicated that it needed to assist restrict the unfold of COVID-19 inside the group.

Whereas those that are discovered making an attempt to entry services which have been shuttered might face fines of as much as $5,000, Tory mentioned that he would favor that folks would cooperate so “this complete nightmare might be over so much sooner.”

“I’d ask individuals to please cooperate. Please act as when you’ve got been requested – as a result of you’ve – to remain dwelling, to steer clear of these locations,” he mentioned. “It’s not as a result of we are attempting to be killjoys. We are attempting to cease a well being emergency right here and to have it come to an finish as quickly as potential.”

Tory mentioned that metropolis employees have already needed to padlock off-leash canine services as a result of individuals weren’t respecting the order and will take additional steps to ramp up enforcement.