Here are today’s new developments
- Canadian public health officials released new modelling numbers today, which show Canada is making progress in slowing the spread of COVID-19, though thousands more cases, and deaths, are expected by early next month, and Canadians are urged to continue physical distancing measures.
- While the increase in new cases slow down, Canada’s forecasted COVID-19 fatality is higher than was initially predicted due to widespread outbreaks in long-term care and seniors’ homes. -- we have been calling on the Ontario government to do far more to protect seniors and long-term care workers.
- With rent due May 1, commercial property landlords and tenants have expressed confusion and doubt about Canada’s commercial rent assistance program, saying details on eligibility and the extent to which they might stand to benefit are scarce -- we have been urging the Ford government to give businesses desperately-needed rent relief and other supports.
- Ontario’s Financial Accountability Office released its preliminary review of the virus’s impact on hospital capacity – the findings include that pre-pandemic, Ontario had a low number of hospital beds and high occupancy rate compared to similar jurisdictions, and that Ontario’s testing target is lagging.
A report out by Toronto’s University Health Network finds that an estimated 35 people may have died during the COVID-19 pandemic because their cardiac surgeries were postponed.
Here are some concerns the official opposition is working on, and solutions we’re pushing for:
- Official opposition leader Andrea Horwath joined workers across the country in marking today's National Day of Mourning -- and announced that MPP Wayne Gates will be tabling a bill to ensure that all essential workers have presumptive WSIB coverage for COVID-19 during the pandemic.
- We continued to urge the government to launch a strategy to protect seniors and long-term care workers in the battle against COVID-19--the proposal includes an order for Public Health to take over management of long-term care homes where seniors aren't properly protected, plus mandating what homes must communicate to residents and their families.
We are asking the province to cover the full cost of take-home cancer drugs for people that need them, an ask we have long pushed for, but which has taken on increased urgency during the pandemic, when many Ontarians have had their in-hospital cancer treatments put on hold.
Here are some things we’re hearing from our community members:
People are raising concerns about the state of long-term care and seniors homes before COVID-19 — a problem we have been raising for years.
- Ongoing concerns about small businesses that are failing, with some facing eviction — through no fault of their own — because there is no provincial support in place for expenses like commercial rent.