The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit reported 12 new cases of COVID-19 today, with six being the result of close contact with someone with the virus, one being a retirement home resident and the other five still under investigation. Our region now has a total of 2,533 confirmed cases, 2,371 cases resolved, and 72 deaths.
Windsor has been selected for testing of an international health passport aimed at helping open up the border and the economy for essential workers. The passport would be a secure app downloaded to a smartphone and will make it easier for essential workers in healthcare and manufacturing to cross the border. The app is expected to be ready for testing in two weeks and the company responsible hopes to launch it for use in the early fourth quarter of 2020. You can read more here.
The City of Windsor announced that they are offering a special waste pick-up for residents looking to get rid of flood damaged items after roughly 250 homes experienced basement flooding in last week’s intense storm. Anyone not going through insurance can call 3-1-1 to set up a special collection on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday this week. There will be some exceptions as to what can be collected, such as appliances, other electronics or household chemical waste.
The Windsor Regional Hospital issued an announcement today to clarify that all medical necessary services are being provided to any individual who comes to the hospitals for care, regardless of whether or not the patient has health insurance. The full announcement can be found here.
Our Caucus has released a statement today, the first day that child care centres are permitted to move to 100 per cent capacity, and to pre-COVID group sizes of 30, with no cohorting. As Ontarians are told to bubble themselves in a social circle of 10, the provincial government has chosen not to give child care centres the support they need to properly cohort kids in a way that separates them from other kids who come from different schools or classes. The provincial government has also left centres on their own to bear the necessary costs of ensuring children’s safety during a pandemic, like hiring more staff, securing PPE and added screening, cleaning and disinfecting measures.
The provincial government is denying it has any responsibility to protect seniors in long-term care after filing court documents defending itself against a class-action lawsuit. They are arguing that the families whose loved ones died in Ontario’s long-term care homes as a result of COVID-19 haven’t suffered any losses. Their argument is that, unlike other provinces, Ontario has virtually no system for long-term care, and therefore the provincial government isn’t responsible. The Official Opposition Leader Andrea Horwath said, “If there was any doubt left about the continuing role of for-profit corporations in Ontario’s long-term care system, this should end it — we can’t keep letting private companies warehouse seniors for profit, with very few rules and almost no inspections. Greedy companies are getting rich, the government is denying responsibility, and seniors have been living, and dying, in horrible conditions.”.
Our Caucus has called for $1,000 pandemic tuition relief for each full-time Ontario post-secondary students and $500 to part-time students, and to stop clawing back the Canadian Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) and Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) from students’ OSAP supports.
Health Canada has said they are willing to consider approving home COVID-19 tests to screen for the virus after previously saying that it was concerned that people might misuse home tests or misinterpret the results. You can read the full story here.
Please continue to practice social distancing, wear a face mask or covering when in public, and wash your hands often.