The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit is reporting 89 new COVID-19 cases today. Yesterday, our region had 85 cases, and on Monday, there were 82 cases. Windsor-Essex had the second highest number of cases in the province today. Toronto reported the highest number with 98 cases, and Simcoe-Muskoka reported the third highest number with 64 cases. Our region now has 571 active cases. Of the new cases announced today, 37 are from close contact with another confirmed case, 15 are from community spread, two are travel related, one is outbreak related, and 34 are under investigation. There are currently 10 workplace outbreaks, eight school outbreaks, eight community outbreaks, and two outbreaks in long-term care homes. In the hospital, there are 23 confirmed cases, with 11 in the ICU. Locally, 81.0 per cent of individuals over the age of five have received one dose of the vaccine, and 76.9 per cent of individuals over five have received both doses. Across the province today, there were 780 new COVID-19 cases. Yesterday, there were 687 cases, and on Monday, there were 788 cases.
FIGHTING FOR SMALL BUSINESSES
The Auditor General released their annual report which found that the provincial government gave $210 million to businesses that were ineligible to receive funding through the Ontario Small Business Support Grant Program, $8 million to businesses that had no revenue loss whatsoever, and gave some businesses $714 million more in support than they lost in revenue. Our caucus had been calling on the government to put supports in place for small businesses for the first 10 months of the pandemic before they finally put together a support program over the course of just two days, and as a result, they launched a late, half-baked program ripe for abuse. While small businesses were closing their doors and walking away from their dreams, the government was shovelling millions over to businesses that didn’t need it. The government chose not to put any oversight in place to make sure grants went into helping small businesses keep their doors open and staff employed, and they wrote off $210 million instead of getting back funds that belong to Ontarians. Our caucus has called for a third round of funding for the Ontario Small Business Support Program after hearing from businesses that their applications were being denied because of typos on their applications or for no apparent reason at all. We will continue to advocate for more support for struggling small businesses, as we recognize that they are job creators and the heart of our main streets.
COVID-19 IN SCHOOLS
The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit is concerned that almost 600 cohorts of students have been dismissed in Windsor-Essex schools since the beginning of September. That has led to a disruption in learning for 12,000 students. With the virus circulating among children, our caucus continues to advocate for ease and efficiency for children’s vaccines, lowering class sizes, and improving ventilation in schools.
Three more school outbreaks were announced today in our region at Malden Central Public School, St. John Vianney Catholic Elementary School and Stella Maris Catholic School. The Health Unit has also lifted the outbreak status for St. Gabriel Catholic Elementary School.
CSC Providence has also reported two active COVID-19 cases at Sainte-Marguerite-d'Youville Catholic Elementary School.
Up-to-date COVID-19 information on confirmed cases and outbreaks from each school board can be found here:
Windsor Essex Catholic District School Board: https://www.wecdsb.on.ca/about/covid19/outbreaks
Greater Essex County District School Board: https://www.publicboard.ca/News/COVID-19Report/Pages/default.aspx?fbclid=IwAR2Nud12U0aJ8zEacn1otyHLJNAT-HjV4ZlyhqSRWZp3WP8oMrfjoiNJdCE#/=
There will be pop-up vaccine clinics at the following locations this week. Children aged 5 to 11 years (or turning 5 in 2021) are now eligible to receive their vaccination at a pop-up clinic. Children must be accompanied by their custodial parent or guardian to receive a vaccine and will be required to present a health card or other form of identification.
- Friday December 3 – Leamington Municipal Building Council Chambers – 111 Erie St N, Leamington – 10am to 3pm
- Friday December 3 – WECHU Leamington Office – 33 Princess St, Leamington – 12pm to 6pm
- Saturday December 4 – Mexican Consulate – 350 Hwy 77, Leamington – 9am to 3:30pm
Please continue to stay safe and follow public health guidelines.