Social Circles

Establishing Social Circles

Effective June 12, 2020: Ontarians Encouraged to Establish Social Circles

  • People throughout Ontario are being encouraged to establish a social “circle” of no more than 10 people who can interact and come into close contact with one another without physical distancing (e.g., can hug one another).

Ontarians who wish to form a safe social circle should follow these five simple steps:

  1. Start with your current circle: the people you live with or who regularly come into your household;
  2. If your current circle is under 10 people, you can add members to your circle, including those from another household, family members or friends;
  3. Get agreement from everyone that they will join the circle;
  4. Keep your social circle safe. Maintain physical distancing with anyone outside of your circle; and
  5. Be true to your circle. No one should be part of more than one circle.

The province has developed a practical step-by-step guide to help Ontarians as they safely develop and join a social circle. There is also a helpful visual guide for how to build your social circle.

Quick facts about establishing social circles

  • The rules for social circles are different from the proposed expansion of social gatherings from five to 10 people.
  • Social gatherings can be any 10 people from outside your household, but where physical distancing of at least two metres should be maintained. 
  • While physical distancing does not need to be practised inside the social circle, other public health advice, including frequent hand washing, respiratory etiquette, and not touching your eyes, nose or mouth should be maintained.
  • Anyone who is ill or experiencing any of the COVID-19 symptoms should immediately limit their contact with anyone in their circle, inform the other members of the circle, visit an assessment centre to be tested, and self-isolate until they receive their lab test result.