April 11th 2020 | COVID-19 Update

Published on April 11, 2020

Happy Easter to all who are celebrating! Although our gatherings will limited to our immediate family,  I am pleased to confirm the Easter Bunny has been declared an essential service and will continue to be able to deliver chocolate, candy and related treats to the children of Ontario while practicing physical distancing and avoiding parks and playgrounds.

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Happy Easter to all who are celebrating! 

Although our gatherings will limited to our immediate family,  I am pleased to confirm the Easter Bunny has been declared an essential service and will continue to be able to deliver chocolate, candy and related treats to the children of Ontario while practicing physical distancing and avoiding parks and playgrounds.
For the latest COVID-19 information from the Government of Ontario click here or visit ontario.ca/coronavirus

         PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT        

Ontario Significantly Expanding COVID-19 Testing

To stop the spread of COVID-19, the Ontario government is implementing the next phase of its strategy to significantly expand and enhance testing. In addition to the ongoing testing of the general public at any of the 100 assessment centres now established across the province, Ontario will be proactively testing several priority groups, including:

  • Hospital inpatients;
  • Residents of long-term care and retirement homes;
  • Health care workers, caregivers, care providers, paramedics, and first responders, including police and firefighters;
  • Remote, isolated, rural and Indigenous communities;
  • Other congregate living centres, including homeless shelters, prisons and group homes;
  • Specific vulnerable populations, including patients undergoing chemotherapy or hemodialysis and requiring transplants, as well as pregnant persons, newborns and cross-border workers; and
  • Other essential workers, as defined by provincial orders.

By implementing this strategy, Ontario expects to double the number of tests processed each day to 8,000 by April 15, 2020 and 14,000 by April 29, 2020, at which point overall lab capacity will have been further expanded. 

The province is also helping to significantly expand the capacity of public health units to conduct contact tracing and case management, both of which are critical to stopping the spread of the virus, by enabling the use of volunteers, including retired nurses and medical students.

Ontario Expands COVID-19 Testing

Ontario’s COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool

 

If you think you have COVID-19 symptoms or have been in close contact with someone who has it, use Ontario’s interactive self-assessment tool to help determine how to seek further care.
 
 
For more information on whether or not you need to seek further care or attend an assessment centre, please contact your family doctor by telephone. You can also contact Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000

Do not visit an assessment centre unless you have been referred by a health care professional. Do not call 911 unless it is an emergency.
 

Province Prevents Operators from Charging Fees while Child Care Centres are Closed

An emergency order has been issued, and immediately prevents any child care operator from charging parent fees where care is not being provided. The order also means that parents cannot lose their child care space because they are not paying fees during this period. This will help provide much needed relief for parents during the outbreak.

The child care sector, like many others, is facing significant financial pressures. Child care providers can seek supports for businesses and individuals under the federal government's Economic Response Plan.

Ontario Protects Parents during COVID-19
 

Province Extends Emergency Orders until April 23

The Ontario government has extended all emergency orders that have been put in place to-date under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act until April 23, 2020, including the closure of outdoor amenities in parks and recreational areas, non-essential workplaces, public places and bars and restaurants, along with restrictions on social gatherings and the prohibition of price gouging.

In addition, new measures have been introduced to address surge capacity in retirement homes, restrict recreational camping on Crown land, and allow the repurposing of existing buildings and temporary structures. All of these actions are based on the advice of Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health.

Ontario Takes Further Action to Stop the Spread of COVID-19
 

New Online Portal to Match Health Care Workers with Employers

The Ontario government is taking further action to stop the spread of COVID-19 by actively recruiting health care workers to increase the frontline capacity of hospitals, clinics, and assessment centres. Today, the province is launching a new online tool that will help match skilled frontline workers with employers.

The new Health Workforce Matching Portal will enable health care providers with a range of experience to join the province's response to COVID-19. Those providers include retired or non-active health care professionals, internationally educated health care professionals, students, and volunteers with health care experience. The portal will efficiently match the availability and skill-sets of frontline health care workers to the employers in need of assistance to perform a variety of public health functions, such as case and contact management.

Are you a health care worker who fits this criteria? Click below to see how you can help.

Online Portal for Health Care Workers
 
New Online Portal Looking For Workers to Make a Difference
 
In order to ensure grocery store shelves remain full and families have food on the table during the COVID-19 outbreak, the Government of Ontario is launching a new web portal, connecting workers with employers looking to fill positions in the agri-food sector. This new online tool will make it easier to match people to essential jobs and training resources throughout the provincial food supply chain.

Do you want to make a difference and work? Click the link below to see job opportunities in the agri-food industry. 
Job Opportunities in the Agri-Food Industry
 
Ontario Accelerates Essential Construction Projects During COVID-19
 
In response to the outbreak of COVID-19, Ontario is extending construction hours for essential construction projects, like critical projects in the health care sector, to 24 hours a day. Work on new hospital builds, expansions, and COVID-19 assessment centres will be able to continue any time of the night or day in order to help accelerate the construction of these important projects and enable employers to take additional steps to protect the health and safety of workers on these job sites.

To read more about this click below: 
Ontario Accelerates Essential Construction Projects
 
Protecting The Most Vulnerable 

As part of the Government of Ontario’s efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19, the province is investing up to $40 million to support organizations that provide residential services for children and youth, people with developmental disabilities and emergency shelters for women and families fleeing domestic violence.

The COVID-19 Residential Relief Fund will cover costs such as additional staffing, residential respite for caregivers; personal protective equipment and supplies; initiatives to support physical distancing and transportation to minimize client exposure.

For more information visit:

Protecting The Most Vulnerable
 
GO Transit 

As of April 8th, all GO train lines will be operating on a reduced schedule with services being adjusted. To view revised GO train schedules visit: https://www.gotransit.com/en/trip-planning/go-service-updates/train-schedule-changes
 

           FEDERAL GOVERNMENT          

Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)

Applications are now open. 

As of Monday, 3.67 million Canadians have applied for CERB or had their EI claims transferred to CERB. Individuals have already began to receive the benefits of CERB. If you are a wage earner, self-employed, a contractor and have a loss of income due to COVID-19 you may be eligible for this new benefit.

For more information:
https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/benefits/apply-for-cerb-with-cra.html


Canada Summer Jobs Program 

To encourage companies to support and hire young people, the federal government will be adjusting the Canada Summer Jobs Program for 2020 by committing to cover 100% of the wages for students hired through this program. 

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy 

The Federal Government has adjusted the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy. giving additional flexibility for employers for which the general approach may not be appropriate, including high-growth firms, sectors that faced difficulties in 2019, non-profits and charities, as well as employers established after February 2019. Under this alternative approach, employers would be allowed to compare their revenue using an average of their revenue earned in January and February 2020.
 

         MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT         

Physical Distancing Blitz Still In Effect

This weekend, the City’s COVID-19 enforcement team will continue to conduct coordinated enforcement efforts, targeting busy parks across the city. Residents are urged to stay at home and keep their distance from others during this weekend’s holidays, leaving only for essential reasons. 

Clothing Donation Boxes during COVID-19 Pandemic

Right now, in response to COVID-19, many charities are not accepting donations or emptying boxes. The City urges all residents who want to make a donation to confirm with charities whether or not they are currently accepting donations. Illegal dumping of garbage by donation bins is not permitted and concerned residents can call 311 to report this.

Resumption of Yard Waste Collection

The City will resume yard waste collection for a period of two weeks from Monday, April 6 to Friday, April 17. Residents are asked to put their yard waste out before 7 a.m. on their regularly scheduled garbage/yard waste collection day. If your yard waste is not picked up the day you put it out, please just leave it out and do not call 311 to report a missed collection.
 
 
Constituency Office Operations
Following recommendations from public health to practice social and physical distancing, my constituency office remains closed at this time. My staff and I are working remotely and remain available to answer your inquiries via phone or email. We appreciate your patience as it may take us longer than normal to get back to you.
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Copyright © 2020 
Robin Martin, MPP
Eglinton-Lawrence
All rights Rserved.

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
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