Residents in Waterloo Region have strong opinions about current COVID-19 restrictions.
“I think a full lockdown again is probably not advisable right now,” student Chris Have said.
“There’s a lot of evidence that when people isolate the numbers come down very quickly,” Waterloo resident Owen Ward said.
Local officials and the province are facing difficult decisions on what to do to bring case numbers down. Waterloo Region moved into the orange tier on Monday, but officials warn a move to the red tier could be possible soon.
“I think they’re doing a pretty good job,” Waterloo resident Stephanie Findlay said. “I personally feel safe, I just got my nails done, there’s Plexiglas and stuff.”
Officials will need to balance health and safety with the impact on the economy.
“Businesses have to run, people have to go to the gym,” Waterloo resident Brian Gerson said. “You can’t really shut down, you can’t really shut down your whole life.”
But as case numbers rise, there are concerns about hospital capacity as well.
“Things are going to start to really overload our health care system and that’s our biggest concern,” Kitchener resident Laurence Wiens said.
On Monday, the region’s top doctor signalled we could be moving towards a lockdown, which is something people are trying to avoid.
“I hope we don’t have to go that far,” Wiens said. “I hope things that are in place slowly contain things.”
“I think there are health problems associated with having lockdowns as well,” Ward said.
As officials consider next steps, the focus remains on physical distancing, frequent hand washing and wearing a mask when necessary.