Police deployed to the streets to keep residents at home in Ontario, Canada.
VIDEOKINGS — Canada is rolling back the clock to 1984 – George Orwell’s 1984. Ontario has announced sweeping new police powers to enforce an extended stay-at-home order. Police in Ontario will now have the power to stop drivers or pedestrians and ask for their address and reason for being out and residents could face fines of up to $C750 (US$600) for refusing to comply. Checkpoints will be established on provincial borders with Manitoba and Quebec to stop non-essential travel – but not on the frontier with the US.
The measures prompted an immediate and furious backlash.
“Blanket powers for police to stop vehicles like this bends our constitutional freedoms too far, and will cause a rash of racial profiling,” Michael Bryant of the Canadian Civil Liberties Association said in a statement.
Ford also announced restrictions on playgrounds, camping and outdoor sports.
And although most of the current cases involve frontline and essential workers, the premier made no mention of sick pay – a policy health experts say would help slow the spread of the virus.