550 vaccinated healthcare workers to attend Canadian Maple Leafs’ 7th game in Toronto
Some 550 healthcare workers who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 will be invited to attend Game 7 between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Montreal Canadiens at Scotiabank Arena on Monday night.
In a press release, Premier Doug Ford said the decision was made in consultation with Ontario’s chief medical officer of health, Toronto public health and hospital administrators.
“It’s well below the capacity of the arena,” said Ford.
“These health workers who received the two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine at least two weeks ago and with precautionary measures in place such as screening, masking, distancing, improved cleaning and monitoring crowds, public health officials are confident that we can get these special fans into the stands safely and with minimal risk. “
The move marks a change of course for Ford and his government, who had said over the weekend that they would not be willing to allow fans into Toronto’s Scotiabank Arena for tonight’s game. Quebec officials allowed about 2,500 masked fans to attend Game 6 in Montreal on Saturday.
Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment is covering the costs, Ford said, and healthcare workers who choose to go will get a free jersey at the game.
“Every day, our healthcare workers put their lives at risk to help others. This little token of appreciation doesn’t match the sacrifices they made during COVID-19, but it is an opportunity for us to recognize their heroic efforts to keep all of us safe, ”said Ford.
“It also shows that the more of us who are vaccinated, the faster we can start doing the things that we lack.”
In a statement, Toronto Mayor John Tory thanked Ford for allowing vaccinated healthcare workers to attend the game.
“Our frontline heroes have helped us through this pandemic and now they will help cheer on our Toronto Maple Leafs in Game 7 against the Montreal Canadiens,” he said.
“I want to thank Premier Ford and Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment for working quickly to find a way to recognize our frontline workers and bring the fans back safely.”