April 30th, 2020 | Weekly Update

Published on April 30, 2020

The Ontario government released A Framework for Reopening our Province, which outlines the criteria Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health and health experts will use to advise the government on the loosening of emergency measures, as well as guiding principles for the safe, gradual reopening of businesses, services and public spaces. 

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Visit my new website which provides a one-stop resource for available supports for individuals and businesses from all levels of government. It will be updated frequently as new information becomes available.



Download my recently released Activity Book for kids. I know how hard it is to keep your kids busy at this time - so I hope this book will provide them a bit of fun, while keeping them busy! Click on the photo to direct you to the Activity Book! Feel free to share it with your family and friends and download and print it at your own discretion. 
I cannot wait to see the talent that children of Eglinton-Lawrence have! Mail in your drawing to Robin Martin, 2882 Dufferin Street, Toronto, ON, M6B 3S6 - alternatively you can email it to [email protected]
Tell your friends and family who have children to participate! 

Deadline: June 10th, 2020


Ontario Unveils Guiding Principles to Reopen the Province

The Ontario government released A Framework for Reopening our Province, which outlines the criteria Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health and health experts will use to advise the government on the loosening of emergency measures, as well as guiding principles for the safe, gradual reopening of businesses, services and public spaces. 

The Framework included: 
  • Stage 1: For businesses that were ordered to close or restrict operations, opening select workplaces that can immediately modify operations to meet public health guidance. Opening some outdoor spaces like parks and allowing for a greater number of individuals to attend some events. Hospitals would also begin to offer some non-urgent and scheduled surgeries, and other health care services.
  • Stage 2: Opening more workplaces, based on risk assessments, which may include some service industries and additional office and retail workplaces. Some larger public gatherings would be allowed, and more outdoor spaces would open.
  • Stage 3: Opening of all workplaces responsibly and further relaxing of restrictions on public gatherings.
Each stage will be in place for two-to-four weeks before proceeding to the next stage. To read more about framework click below:  
Read the Framework to Reopening the Province of Ontario
The Ontario government is ensuring employers have the safety guidelines they need to protect workers, customers, and the general public from COVID-19 as it prepares for a gradual reopening of the provincial economy. 

In partnership with the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development, Ontario's four provincial health and safety associations have released a series of more than 60 technical sector guidance documents to further support employers and employees in remaining safe in the workplace during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Click here to view the list of guidance documents

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: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/self-assessment 

Click here for information on local assessment centres, including who should attend one. For more information, please contact your family doctor or Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.

For the most up-to-date COVID-19 information from the Government of Ontario visit ontario.ca/coronavirus
Ontario launches Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program (OCECRA)

The Ontario government is partnering with the federal government to provide urgent relief for small businesses and landlords affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. The province is committing $241 million through the new Ontario-Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program (OCECRA). The total amount of provincial-federal relief that would be provided is more than $900 million, helping to ensure small businesses are ready to reopen their doors when the emergency measures are lifted. 

The program will be administered by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. Information on how to apply will be made available from the federal government in the coming weeks.

Click here to read more about OCECRA
Frontline Workers to Receive Additional Pandemic Pay 

In recognition of the dedication, long hours and increased risk of working to contain the COVID-19 outbreak, the Ontario government is providing a number of frontline staff with a temporary pandemic payment.

This increase will provide four dollars per hour worked on top of existing hourly wages, regardless of the qualified employee's hourly wage. In addition, employees working over 100 hours per month would receive lump sum payments of $250 per month for each of the next four months. This means that eligible employees working an average of 40 hours per week would receive $3,560 in additional compensation. 

See the List of Frontline Workers Eligible for Pandemic Pay
Schools will be closed until May 31st 

The Minister of Education announced that all publicly-funded schools will remain closed until at least May 31, 2020, as part of an effort to keep students, staff and families safe from COVID-19. Students continue to participate in classes online through the initiative launched by the Ministry of Education in the beginning of April. 

The extension was based on expert advice from the Chief Medical Officer of Health and health officials on the COVID-19 Command Table and is part of the government's ongoing effort to stop the spread of the virus. 

Read more about Recent Announcement on School Closures
Ontario Parks to Remain Closed Until May 31st

In order to keep Ontarians safe during this COVID-19 outbreak, the Ontario government is extending the closure of Ontario's provincial parks and conservation reserves to May 31, 2020. This includes car camping, backcountry camping, roofed accommodations, day use opportunities, access points and all public buildings.

Provincial parks and conservation reserves will continue to remain fully closed to all recreational activities.

Reservations for arrivals up to, and including, any further closure extension date will be automatically cancelled and reservation holders will receive a full refund with no penalty. We are also providing penalty-free refunds to reservation holders who wish to change or cancel their 2020 camping reservation, regardless of arrival date.


           FEDERAL GOVERNMENT          

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS)

To help employers keep and re-hire workers amidst the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government has implemented the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS). This important economic measure provides a subsidy of 75% of an eligible employee's weekly earnings, to a maximum of $847 per employee per week, to eligible employers, for up to 12 weeks. Retroactive to March 15, 2020, the CEWS will prevent further job losses and encourage employers to re-hire workers previously laid off as a result of COVID-19. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is administering the CEWS on behalf of the Government.

To apply: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/subsidy/emergency-wage-subsidy/cews-how-apply.html#h-2

Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB)

The Federal government has passed the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) in the House of Commons which would provide support to students by providing $1,250 per month for eligible students or $1,750 per month for eligible students with dependents or disabilities. The benefit will be available from May to August 2020.

         MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT         

Virtual Meeting of City of Toronto Council 
The City of Toronto council has met today virtually for the first time in Toronto's history. This was enabled by emergency legislation passed by the province on March 19, 2020 to permit virtual meetings of municipal councils. 

High Park Closed 
High Park is closed for its annual cherry blossom event to prevent large gatherings. Those who try to enter closed parks can be fined up to $5,000. Residents can watch the cherry blossoms bloom via livestream plus enjoy a virtual walk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C0dAxuYxscs
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.