The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit announced 171 new COVID-19 cases today, along with seven additional deaths. Five deaths were from long-term care or retirement homes, and two were from the community. Of the new cases announced, 14 are related to outbreaks, 10 are from close contact with another confirmed case, four are considered community spread, one is travel related outside of North America, and 142 are under investigation. There are now 2,721 active cases in our community, bringing the total number to 10,665 cases, with 121 confirmed cases in the hospital and 19 in the ICU, 7,696 cases listed as resolved, 20 outbreaks in long-term care or retirement homes, 21 workplace outbreaks, three hospital outbreaks, and 248 deaths. The province reported 2,998 new cases today as well as 100 new deaths linked to the virus. On Thursday there were 3,326 cases, on Wednesday there were 2,961 cases and on Tuesday there were 2,903 cases.
There’s no evidence that this week’s stay-at-home order is any different from last week’s lockdown. It’s full of loopholes, contradictions, and vague instructions that allow everyone to decide for themselves what’s essential. There are no supports in place to make this work — things like paid sick days. In the past week, we have seen 38 people die of COVID related illnesses in Windsor Essex. My thoughts are with those families who have lost loved ones to this terrible virus, and those who are in the front lines battling for us. We need to do our part and stay home. Please do all that you can to avoid contacts with others to avoid the spread. I realize the toll it is placing on everyone mentally and financially and we will continue to advocate for relief for our constituents. But please, venture out only when it is truly necessary and limit you contact when out. New modelling from the Public Health Agency of Canada suggests that the number of daily COVID-19 cases could more than triple to 30,000 if contacts increase. Based on current case counts, Canada is also on track to see approximately 2,000 more deaths over the next 10 days. Please read the full article here. If you have not already done so, please download the COVID alert app.
The Ontario government is holding budget consultations and is asking the people of Ontario for their ideas on how to support families, workers and business during COVID-19. Please click here to learn how to submit your ideas by email, mail or by filling out a survey. The 2021 Budget Consultations will close on February 12, 2021.
Canada’s Public Services and Procurement Minister says production issues in Europe will temporarily reduce Pfizer’s ability to deliver vaccines to all countries that receive vaccines produced at its European facility, including Canada. This is due to work to expand its European manufacturing capacity impacting production of the vaccine. The Minister added that Canada is still on track to have enough approved vaccines to vaccinate all willing Canadians by the end of September 2021 and that Pfizer says they should be able to catch up by the end of March to be on track for the total committed doses in the first quarter.
The University of Windsor is offering COVID-19 testing today and tomorrow for its international students arriving to campus and all students arriving for residence. Students who are eligible are required to book online and will be screened prior to attending their appointment. Students must also complete a self-assessment on the Safe Lancer app and bring either an OHIP card for domestic students, or their Greenshield insurance number for international students.
After an outbreak was declared at Essex-Windsor EMS, Windsor Fire and Rescue said they are preparing for such an occurrence in one or more of their stations. So far there hasn’t been an outbreak, but Windsor Fire and Rescue has implemented an in-depth tracking system to help with contact tracing if a firefighter tests positive. You can read more here.
Windsor Police say charges are pending against people who attended a small protest against new stay-at-home orders early Thursday morning. Officers can order people attending gatherings to go home, close any building where an illegal event is taking place, and ask for the name and address of anyone they think is committing an offence under the emergency legislation. Charges can be laid through a ticket or a summons to appear in court, with the minimum fine set at $750. Police are asking that you do not use 911 for stay-at-home related questions. Please contact the Windsor Police at their non-emergency line 519-258-6111 with all complaints and inquiries related to enforcement.
The Ontario Small Business Support Grant is now open and provides a minimum of $10,000 to a maximum of $20,000 to eligible small businesses whose operations have been affected due to COVID-19 restrictions. For more details and to apply, click here. Many of you still tell us you don’t qualify, and we will continue to press this Government for real relief.
Ontario’s Labour Minister announced an enforcement blitz on big box stores this weekend in the Toronto and Hamilton area to ensure the guidelines are being followed under the new provincial regulations. The blitz is expected to spread to Windsor-Essex next week. You can read the full article here.
Please follow all public health guidelines to stop the spread of the virus, including wearing a face mask when out in public, continuing to practice social distancing of two metres from other people, and washing your hands often.