Bill Kelly: It’s time to get tough with pandemic offenders – Hamilton

While we share the excitement about COVID-19 vaccines, we should also digest the sobering projections from health care experts that many thousands will fall prey to COVID-19 and many will die before the mass vaccination programs kick into gear halfway through 2021 if we don’t change our behaviours.

That’s why it’s long past time for the city of Hamilton — and all cities for that matter — to come down hard on businesses and individuals who abuse and ignore the pandemic rules and regulations in Ontario.

Read more:
Hamilton Airbnb owner charged with violating Ontario’s COVID-19 rules

This past weekend, the owner of an Airbnb in Hamilton’s east end was charged with numerous offences when authorities busted up a 30-person party.

For the record, gatherings of more than five people are illegal under the Reopening Ontario Act.

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And that’s the point. The list of restrictions in the Reopening Ontario Act are not suggestions, they are the law of the land, and if you ignore the law or thumb your nose at the law, expect to suffer the consequences.

Read more:
Hamilton to begin ‘naming and shaming’ businesses that break COVID-19 rules

The pandemic has been difficult for many businesses, but it’s been difficult for all of us. And the longer people ignore the rules, the longer the pandemic will linger.

The fines for non-compliance are substantial, especially for struggling businesses, but as the saying goes, compliance is free.

Paul Johnson, director of Hamilton’s Emergency Operations Centre, says the time for education is over and enforcement is now in full effect.

Too many have suffered and too many have died.

Stop being part of the problem and become part of the solution.

Bill Kelly is the host of the Bill Kelly Show on Global News Radio 900 CHML.

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