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Lottery kiosks and construction site bathrooms: new Ontario regulations kick in

Signage explaining that Ontario pharmacists are able to provide prescriptions for minor health conditions is photographed at a Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacy in Etobicoke, Ont., on Wednesday, January 11, 2023. From self-serve lottery terminals verifying ticket buyers' ages to allowing pharmacists to administer certain injections to requiring women-only bathrooms on construction sites, a wide range of new provincial rules and regulations comes into effect Saturday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Tijana Martin

From self-serve lottery terminals verifying ticket buyers’ ages to allowing pharmacists to administer certain injections to requiring women-only bathrooms on construction sites, a wide range of new provincial rules and regulations comes into effect Saturday.

The changes include a recently announced step aimed at cottage country, with a ban on floating accommodations, such as rafts and barges that have buildings or structures for people to stay in overnight, on provincial waterways.

Ontario is rolling out self-serve lottery ticket terminals, and a regulation change will allow the machines to verify the customer is at least 18 years old, so staff don’t have to individually check IDs.

A number of regulatory health changes include allowing registered practical nurses to perform more procedures, for example those relating to wound care, and allowing pharmacists to administer certain medications and substances via injection or inhalation.

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Surgeons will no longer have to send tissues removed during reconstructive joint operations to a lab for non-essential analyses, a move the province says will reduce “outdated and costly” practices that don’t provide value to patient care.

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Regulations around specimen collection and blood testing are also being changed to allow victims of crime, first responders and emergency personnel to more quickly learn if they have been exposed to communicable diseases when they come into contact with someone’s “bodily substances.”

A set of labour changes in a law from Minister Monte McNaughton will require a separate washroom for women on larger construction sites and strengthen hygiene requirements on job sites.

Occupational Health and Safety Act regulations are also changed to strengthen safety for miners.

A new program intended to make the towing industry safer launches on Tuesday, when tow operators, tow truck drivers and vehicle storage operators under the provincial towing regime can apply for certification. They will have to meet training, insurance, vehicle safety, and criminal record check requirements.

Warranty coverage is being increased for new homebuyers from $300,000 to $400,000 for freehold home purchase agreements or construction contracts.

Regulations are also being strengthened for operators of licensed foster care and group homes.

Small-scale beer breweries will be exempt from having to get environmental permission for air emissions.

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Some changes not coming into effect Saturday are increases for driver and vehicle fees such as driver’s licences and tests that had been set to go up July 1.

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