The mayor of Peterborough is “strongly encouraging” residents in red-zone and locked-down areas to refrain from visiting her city amid the coronavirus pandemic.

In a video statement sent to Global News Peterborough on Tuesday, Mayor Diane Therrien says now that the city and region are in a “yellow zone — protect” designation under the province’s COVID-19 framework, people need to be vigilant. The designation began Monday and will be in effect for 28 days.

Read more:
COVID-19 — Peterborough-area businesses have week to complete safety plans for yellow zone

“This means that we need to be more vigilant than ever to keep our numbers low and ensure we aren’t moved into the red zone,” she said.

Therrien says there are “concerns” about people from the GTA visiting the city. Durham entered the red zone and Toronto and Peel Region entered lockdown on Monday, while other parts of the GTA remain in the red zone.

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“We are working with public health to keep an eye on this,” said Therrien. “The city doesn’t have the ability to prevent people from travelling here, but I strongly encourage people outside Peterborough to stay out of the Peterborough area — please.”

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As of Monday, Peterborough Public Health has reported 195 cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic was declared in March. There have been five deaths — three associated with a current outbreak at Fairhaven long-term care in Peterborough.

Therrien referred to the health unit’s website to seek additional information on how to stay safe and healthy and who to contact with concerns.

“What we can do as a city and as a community is to keep ourselves and each other safe by staying home if you aren’t feeling well, avoid any non-essential travel outside Peterborough — same as we don’t want people coming here; wearing face coverings, supporting our local businesses — many offering online ordering and curbside pickup,” she said.

Therrien also asked city residents to support local businesses that have been “stepping up” and ensuring they are following best practices for health and safety.

“So in particular as we head into the holiday season, please shop and support local,” she said. “Be safe, be kind and take care of each other.”

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