Dunnville Farmers Market opening for curbside pickup May 30

The Dunnville Farmers Market’s Executive Board of Directors, in consultation with County and Health Unit officials, has developed a 2-phase approach for re-opening the market. A number of public health and safety protocols have been established to ensure the safety of vendors and the community, and as of May 30, the market will open for curbside pickup service on Saturdays only.

Placing an order for curbside pickup

During phase 1, customers will be able to place orders online via www.dunnvillefarmersmarket.ca between Monday morning at 8am and Thursday evening at 5pm. Vendors will follow-up with customers who have placed orders by Friday to confirm their order and provide their designated pickup time.

Picking up an order

On pickup day (Saturday), customers will be required to pull up to the main doorway to receive parking instructions. Once they have parked as directed, pre-paid customers will be asked to open their trunk or back door, and the vendor will deposit the goods in their vehicle. Walk-up customers are asked to visit the main doorway for pickup while keeping 2m apart from others.


Customers who wish to pay cash or use electronic point-of-pay at the time of pickup (e.g. debit) will be able to do so. Customers paying cash will need to have exact change ready in an envelope with the vendor’s name on it. Vendors will not be making change.

In between all interactions, vendors will be performing strict sanitization processes that align with provincial public health guidelines.

“Food safety has always been a top priority for us and it is even more so now in light of the current pandemic,” said James Richardson, President of the Dunnville Farmers Market Executive Board of Directors. “I appreciate the dedication of all executive members that have worked hard to develop our re-opening plan, as well as the guidance provided by Haldimand County and the Health Unit. We’ll continue working to provide safe access to healthy, local foods and look forward to seeing our loyal customers once again,” Richardson added.

Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt continues to urge the community to support local businesses. “I am thrilled to hear that the Farmers Market is re-opening and it is very welcome news for many,” Hewitt said. “I’m proud of the local business community’s response to these challenging circumstances and encourage everyone to keep supporting our farmers and independent businesses who are the backbone of our local economy.”

For the further information about the Dunnville Farmers Market’s new operating procedures and curbside pickup service, visit the Dunnville Farmers Market website.

For the most up-to-date local information about COVID-19, including facility closures and municipal service options, visit HaldimandCounty.ca/COVID-19 or follow the County on Facebook/Twitter. These channels are frequently updated with announcements regarding closures, re-openings and other important COVID-19 news.

For current public health information, visit the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit website.

Haldimand County Fire Department Offers Safety Reminders For Home Fire Sprinkler Week (May 17-23)

Home Fire Sprinkler Week runs from May 17-23 in Ontario, and Haldimand County Fire Department has a issued a few important safety reminders for residents.

While there are no questions about the importance of early detection provided by smoke and carbon monoxide alarms (which are required in all households under the Fire Protection & Prevention Act), automatic sprinkler systems can provide even further protection against fires.

Home fire sprinklers will activate, contain and likely extinguish a fire in less time than it would take the fire department to arrive on the scene. Only the sprinkler closest to the fire will activate, spraying water directly on the fire. 90% of fires are contained by the operation of just one sprinkler head.

During a structure fire, the fire department likely uses eight-and-a-half times more water than an automatic sprinkler system will to contain a fire. Home fire sprinklers use only a fraction of the water used by fire department hoses; a sprinkler uses 38L-98L per minute compared to 1 fire department hose line at 946L per minute.

The largest factor to keep in mind in terms of early detection and early suppression is the construction materials being used in newly built homes. It is a fact that there is a significant flame-spread difference in new construction compared to older construction. Most structure fires of new home construction reach total loss before the local fire department arrives.

“Although automated sprinklers aren’t required, they are certainly worth considering as an added protective measure,” said Richard Geerdink, Fire Prevention Officer. “Approximately 400 Canadians die in fires each year. Installing both smoke alarms and fire sprinklers reduces the risk of death in a home fire by approximately 82%,” Geerdink added.

The Haldimand County Fire Department encourages all residents to practice fire safety, be aware of risks and have protection measures in place (e.g. smoke/CO alarms, fire extinguishers, 72 hour emergency kit). Many resources are available on the Fire Prevention page of HaldimandCounty.ca, including activity books for children.

Residents who have questions about fire prevention may also contact the Fire Prevention Bureau directly at 905-318-5932 for guidance. Assistance is available for low-income or vulnerable residents who need support obtaining fire/CO alarms or batteries.

Haldimand County announces re-opening of boat launches, tennis/pickleball courts and skate/BMX parks

Haldimand County will be re-opening some of its outdoor amenities as early as Saturday, May 16. The re-openings are being implemented in response to yesterday’s Provincial announcement regarding Phase 1 of Ontario’s re-opening plan. Provincial rules limiting gatherings to 5 persons or less remain in effect.

Among the businesses/activities permitted to re-open under the new Provincial rules are marinas (May 16), golf courses (May 16) and outdoor non-team sporting competitions (May 19). As such, the County will be re-opening the following amenities:

Boat launches – Saturday, May 16, 2020

All public boat launches EXCEPT the Port Maitland West launch (accessed via the Esplanade) will be open for use starting this Saturday. Port Maitland West will not open until piers and beaches are open for normal public use. Docks will not be put in immediately as they require inspections and seasonal maintenance, which will take some time.

Parking lots at trailheads/public parks – Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Barricades at green space & trail parking areas will be removed by staff over the course of the long weekend. All parking lots at County-operated green spaces and trails are expected to be open by Tuesday.

Parks – Tuesday,  May 19, 2020

All County parks will be re-open for use on Tuesday, with the exception of the Port Maitland Park (pier, and beach). Formerly, parks were open for walk-through access only. Fishing will now be permitted from riverbanks in County parks and it is now appropriate, based on public health guidelines, for residents to enjoy a picnic or game of catch with members of their household while practicing social distancing with others. Playgrounds, pavilions & picnic tables remain off limits until further notice.

Tennis/pickleball courts, disc golf courses & skate/BMX parks – Tuesday, May 19, 2020

All tennis & pickleball courts will re-open for use on Tuesday, as well as the disc golf course at Lafortune Park and all skate/BMX parks. All other sporting fields and courts remain closed.

Residents are asked to be patient while staff remove barricades and amend posted signage to reflect these changes.

“With the loosening of restrictions and greater access to outdoor amenities, we expect that the public will be respectful of social distancing guidelines, not congregate in groups larger than 5 people, and keep 6ft away from other individuals,” said Mayor Ken Hewitt. “While these re-openings are a step in the right direction & welcome news, disregarding the guidelines puts our community at risk. I implore everyone to exercise common sense, be vigilant and share these spaces responsibly,” Hewitt added.

Members of the public are encouraged to contact the COVID-19 enforcement hotline at 519-428-8019 to report violations of individuals who are not following social distancing guidelines. To ensure continued access to parks, residents are urged to demonstrate personal responsibility, practice social distancing and not take advantage of public green spaces (e.g: congregate in groups) so they can be enjoyed, especially as warmer weather approaches.

For the most up-to-date local COVID-19 information, including municipal service options, facility/amenity closures and program cancellations, visit HaldimandCounty.ca/COVID-19.

For up-to-date public health information, visit the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit’s website.

Haldimand & Norfolk County Paramedic Services Team Up For Swab Task Force

Haldimand & Norfolk County Paramedic Services have formed a task force to administer additional COVID-19 testing for vulnerable residents, residents of congregate settings and staff at long-term care homes.

The task force initiative was spearheaded by the Health Unit, Haldimand & Norfolk counties in response to new directives from Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health and deputy ministers of health & long-term care.

The unified task force increases testing capacity at long-term care homes and enables vulnerable residents and seniors – who live at home but cannot make it to a testing site – to be tested at their own residence. A number of these residents are currently waitlisted for admission into long-term care homes, and testing is required prior to admission.

A team of approximately 12 paramedics received training to administer swab tests. Screening of all residents and staff at long-term care facilities in both counties, symptomatic or not, is underway. The goal is to test all residents and staff in LTC homes across Haldimand & Norfolk.

The task force was formed in response to direction from the Provincial government to test as many residents of long-term care facilities as possible to reduce transmission, better understand the prevalence of COVID-19 in long-term care homes and inform future planning.

“Haldimand County Emergency Services is pleased to be part of this community safety and protection initiative. We’ll continue to support the Health Unit and local healthcare providers until COVID-19 is no longer a threat to the health and well-being of our community,” said Jason Gallagher, Haldimand County’s Fire Chief & Manager of Emergency Services.

“Our paramedic team – and specifically our community paramedics – are a highly-trained group of individuals with deep experience in providing healthcare directly to those who need it most,” said Sarah Page, Norfolk’s Chief of Paramedic Services. “We’re proud to be playing a key role in helping Haldimand and Norfolk stop the spread of COVID-19, specifically amongst those most vulnerable to respiratory illness.”

Haldimand County reminds residents and business owners of COVID-19 information portal, key contacts

In recognition of the rapidly changing rules relating to business operations and public spaces during the COVID-19 emergency and to assist the community in obtaining important information, Haldimand County is reminding community stakeholders where to obtain the most accurate, up-to-date COVID-19 information and who to contact for specific enquiries and guidance.

The County’s COVID-19 information web page – HaldimandCounty.ca/covid-19 provides detailed local information, key contacts and links to helpful resources from provincial and federal healthcare authorities.

Information & key contacts for business owners

Business owners who have questions about the Province’s list of essential services and if/how their business can operate during the pandemic will find a number of helpful links at HaldimandCounty.ca/covid-19 under the ‘Resources for Business’ tab. Links to the Province’s list of essential services and safety guidelines for business operations (by sector) are among the resources provided. Business owners with specific questions are encouraged to contact:

Province of Ontario’s Business Information Hotline – 1-888-444-3659
Help is available from Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. and Saturday to Sunday 8:30 a.m. –
5:00 p.m.

Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit Environmental Health Team Hotline
For COVID-19 inquiries related to or regarding food premises, migrant farms, special events, personal
service settings, child care centers or workplaces (non-healthcare setting), you may also call the
HNHU’s Environmental Health Team Hotline at 519-426-6128 (Mon-Fri, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.)

Information & key contacts for community members

Residents who have questions about municipal services, including facility/amenity closures, use of parks and trails, program cancellations, etc. will find current information at HaldimandCounty.ca/covid-19. A number of resources including stay-at-home activities, employment assistance and supports for housebound individuals (e.g. food or essential item delivery) are also available on this page. Residents with public health-related questions are encouraged to contact:

Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit COVID-19 Hotline
     For general enquiries regarding COVID-19, please call the HNHU’s COVID-19 Hotline at 519-426-
6170 ext. 9999. Mon-Fri, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Residents with questions related to municipal services, facilities/amenities are encouraged to contact:

Haldimand County customer service
     For general enquiries regarding municipal services, facilities/amenities, programs or related
matters, contact Haldimand County at 905-318-5932 or info@haldimandcounty.on.ca Mon-Fri, 8:30
a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Haldimand & Norfolk Counties To Re-Open Trails And Parks For Resident Walk-Through Use

Haldimand & Norfolk Counties are working closely with the Medical Officer of Health to safely re-open parks & trails for resident use. Both counties intend to re-open these spaces for walk-through access this weekend and are asking for the public’s cooperation in practicing social distancing guidelines. In Haldimand County, Lower LaFortune Park (Caledonia) and the Port Maitland Park & pier remain closed.

The decision to re-open trails is largely due to the efforts of residents who have been following public health guidelines and doing their part to flatten the curve. Both counties are grateful for the public’s cooperation and acting with the community’s well-being in mind. The more diligently everyone practices social distancing, the sooner everyone will be able to get back to the activities they enjoy most.

Residents walking or cycling on trails or through parks should remain 2 metres apart and groups of more than 5 people remain prohibited. People are not permitted to gather, picnic or congregate in the parks at this time.

Residents should also note that it will take some time for staff to visit all areas and remove existing closure signs. Over the weekend, people using the trails/walking through parks and practicing social distancing should not be concerned about receiving a ticket for doing so.

“We are in a unique situation in Haldimand, being a desirable place to visit during a worldwide pandemic, on the cusp of peak tourism season. As warm weather approaches, we are going to have to work together to cooperate and share our outdoor spaces responsibly,” said Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt. “The intent of re-opening trails and parks is to allow local residents enjoy the green spaces in their own communities & get the physical and mental exercise we all need,” Hewitt continued.

“We’ve all been cooped up inside for a long time, and I know many of us are looking forward to getting some much-needed time outdoors,” said Mayor Chopp. “Mayor Hewitt and I have heard from many residents who are keen to safely use these areas, so we’re very pleased to be working with our Medical Officer of Health on getting them re-opened for public use.”

Both Hewitt & Chopp ask for the public’s continued patience while re-opening details are finalized. To ensure residents get adequate access to community green spaces and trails and to prevent further transmission of the virus, both Counties, with direction from the Medical Officer of Health, are discouraging non-residents from visiting until the public health emergency is over. Most parking lots of trailheads and parks will remain closed to discourage large volumes of people from traveling to these destinations.

In accordance with Provincial Orders, boat launches, piers, playgrounds, pavilions, sporting fields/courts and other outdoor amenities will remain closed until further notice in an effort to protect community safety.

To ensure continued access to parks, residents are urged to demonstrate personal responsibility, practice social distancing and not take advantage of public green spaces (e.g: congregate in groups) so they can be enjoyed, especially as warmer weather approaches.

For local COVID-19 information, including municipality facility closures and program cancellations, visit HaldimandCounty.ca/COVID-19 or NorfolkCounty.ca/COVID-19.

For up-to-date public health information, visit the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit’s website.


Haldimand County Reminds Residents Of Public Health Orders Regarding Trailer Parks And Campgrounds

Haldimand County is reminding the public and seasonal campground/trailer park operators of public health orders in place to protect community safety.

Recognizing that now is the time campgrounds and trailer parks traditionally open for business, the County is reminding everyone that Provincial emergency regulations prohibit campgrounds & trailer parks from operating unless they are accommodating an individual who does not have another residence in Canada and is in need of housing during the emergency period. Use of campgrounds and trailer parks for recreational purposes is currently not allowed under the provincial order.

On May 1, the Premier of Ontario announced a small list of essential businesses that would be permitted to open under strict safety guidelines as of May 4, however, campgrounds and trailer parks must remain closed as per Provincial orders.

Campgrounds and other seasonal parks are encouraged to contact the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit for guidance with respect to any exceptional circumstances (e.g. if a seasonal occupant has no where else to go).

Haldimand County Municipal Law Enforcement Officers and the OPP will be monitoring these areas and responding to calls for non-compliance. Property owners can be subject to fines for non-compliance.

Campgrounds and other seasonal parks that open for any use other than those permitted by the Provincial Order may result in an original set fine of $880.00 being imposed on operators per day, per offence. Continued offences (after receiving fines from the County), and where a court convicts, may see an additional penalty imposed to:

(a) an individual,  a fine of not more than $100,000 and for a term of imprisonment of not more than one year;

(b) an individual who is a director or officer of a corporation, a fine of not more than $500,000 and for a term of imprisonment of not more than one year; and

(c) a corporation, to a fine of not more than $10,000,000.

Anyone who witnesses violations of public health orders that may be compromising community safety are encouraged to call the COVID-19 enforcement hotline at 519-428-8019.

“I am just as eager as everyone else to get outside and enjoy the nicer weather, but I am asking for everyone’s patience and cooperation. The restrictions in place are part of a larger effort to promote social distancing and reduce the number of infections from COVID-19, which appears to be working. By following the directions of health authorities for the next few weeks, we’re increasing the likelihood of being able to use our seasonal recreational amenities this summer,” said Mayor Ken Hewitt.

For local COVID-19 information, including municipality facility closures and program cancellations, visit HaldimandCounty.ca/COVID-19.

For up-to-date public health information, visit the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit’s website.

Haldimand & Norfolk County Mayors Deliver Donated iPads To Anson Place

In an effort to help long-term care home residents stay connected with their loved ones throughout the pandemic, Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt & Norfolk County Mayor Kristal Chopp launched an initiative to bring iPads to these homes. On Tuesday, April 28, 2020, mayors Hewitt & Chopp made their first delivery of 10 iPads, headsets and iPad cases to Anson Place in Hagersville.

iPads were received in the parking lot of Anson Place by recreation volunteer Wesley Devries. The iPads will be used by volunteers and staff to keep residents engaged and connected with family and friends.

Pictured (L to R): Haldimand County Mayor Ken Hewitt, Anson Place recreation volunteer Wesley Devries, Norfolk County Mayor Kristal Chopp.

“We reached out to a few businesses with the idea of donating iPads and headsets to our long term care residents and was absolutely amazed at the response. What started with bringing a couple of iPads has grown to now over 60 iPads and 200 headsets,” said Mayor Hewitt. Hewitt noted that the biggest hurdle was actually acquiring the iPads due to increased demand, but the first shipment arrived and more are on the way.

Initial contributions from Empire Communities, Losani Homes, Ballantry Homes, Pattern Energy and the McKeil Family Foundation helped get the program off the ground.

“The outpouring of community support we’ve received is incredible. From making masks to donating medical supplies, PPE, iPads and everything in between, residents and businesses have truly stepped up to support one another. It’s the Haldimand way,” Hewitt added.

“Now more than ever, it’s important to keep in touch with loved ones – especially those who live in long-term care homes, who can’t see visitors in person right now,” said Norfolk County Mayor Kristal Chopp. “It brings me great joy to know these deliveries are helping to connect seniors with their families during such a difficult time.”

Mayor Hewitt is hoping to bring iPads to all long-term care residences in Haldimand & Norfolk counties. He encourages anyone who is willing to assist in securing either funds or iPads to contact him directly at mayor@haldimandcounty.on.ca.

Haldimand County Residents Reminded Of Paramedic COVID-19 Response Protocol

Haldimand County paramedics have been following a number of strict COVID-19 protocols and Ministry of Health guidelines to protect themselves and the community. Residents are reminded that paramedics who respond to calls may be donning special PPE gear when they arrive and must conduct a 2 metre distance assessment of patients to screen for the virus.

If the patient’s condition allows, one medic will enter the home in PPE while the second paramedic remains outside until it is determined what level of PPE is required. Once the necessary PPE is determined, the paramedics will continue to don the appropriate PPE and treat the patient. They will also put a surgical mask on the patient as well as a precaution.

This process can take approximately 2-4 minutes to complete, depending on the amount of PPE required.

Paramedics may also be wearing a respirator on specific calls, which is an apparatus that looks like a gas mask. This provides a higher level of protection and is usually worn on calls where the patient screens positive for COVID-19.

“We understand that when you call 911 and an ambulance arrives you expect instantaneous entry into your home. Under normal circumstances this is the process, however, the pandemic has required us to implement some additional protective measures. Keeping our paramedics and patients safe is our number one priority,” said Jason Gallagher, Manager of Emergency Services & Fire Chief.

[ Pictured below: A Haldimand County paramedic in full PPE. ]

Haldimand County Provides Update On Spring/Summer 2020 Community Guide, Recreation Programming, Facility Bookings & Public Events

The release of Haldimand County’s Spring/Summer 2020 Community Guide, which was scheduled to be delivered to all households the week of April 20, will not be proceeding as usual this year.

Due to the fluidity of the COVID-19 pandemic situation, the unknown duration of municipal facility closures and public health orders/restrictions, the County has made the difficult decision to cancel all summer programming (summer camps, aquatics programs and heritage/culture workshops). In-person library programming will also be on hold until further notice. These activities are a large component of the Spring/Summer Community Guide publication.

In addition to these cancellations, all bookings of County facilities (e.g.: halls, sports fields, pavilions, arenas) up to and including June 27 have been cancelled, as well as all festivals and events scheduled to take place on County property. The County will closely monitor any changes to public health guidelines issued by federal, provincial and local authorities and review all opportunities to introduce special programming, resume events and provide recreational opportunities once it is deemed safe to do so.

“COVID-19 has impacted recreation, library, heritage/cultural services and community events significantly because the majority of their offerings are conducted in-person, at public facilities and involve groupings of people,” said Craig Manley, Chief Administrative Officer. “We know our recreation programs are highly valued by the community and this news will be disappointing to many. We’ve had to make some challenging decisions throughout this unprecedented situation in order to comply with public health orders and keep the community safe,” he continued.

A list of stay-at-home activities curated by County staff is available at HaldimandCounty.ca/covid-19/. Residents are encouraged to check the Haldimand County website, Facebook & Twitter accounts for updates and information on County services.

Although the County has instituted the above-noted closure dates and programming cancellations, it is committed to remaining flexible to the changing COVID-19 environment and is eager to help residents, families and visitors get back to the activities, events and projects that make our communities vibrant, welcoming and engaging. Once restrictions begin to be lifted, and depending upon the timing, the County will work hard to help everyone get back out and active.

A list of Frequently Asked Questions related to recreation programming, festivals and events, heritage & cultural services and facility bookings is available at HaldimandCounty.ca/covid-19/.