WHAT TO KNOW
As of 3:30 on Tuesday, Global COVID-19 cases have reached 3,192,545, up from 3,063,814 yesterday at 3:30 p.m. Canada is now reporting 51,231 cases, up from 49,815 cases of COVID-19 yesterday.
The number of new cases continues to drop in Ontario, with the province announcing only 347 new cases, the lowest number since April 6. The Province reports 15,728 cases, up from 15,381 cases yesterday. The province has now tested 264,594 individuals and reports 9,530 tests are currently under investigation. More information here.
The City of Toronto has partnered with technology and telecommunications companies to provide free temporary internet access for many vulnerable Torontonians. These partnerships will provide free access for residents in lower-income neighbourhoods, seniors in long-term care homes and clients in many City-operated shelters. These initiatives will allow more people to connect online to social supports and vital services while still complying with directives to stay at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. Participating companies include: Rogers, Bell, Telus, Cisco Canada, BAI Canada and others. More information here.
To better understand the impact of COVID-19 on businesses, employers and employees, communities and our economy, Statistics Canada and the Canadian Chamber of Commerce collaborated to launch the Canadian Survey on Business Conditions.
Representatives from more than 12,600 businesses visited Statistics Canada’s website and took part in the online questionnaire about how COVID-19 is affecting their business. 32.3% of businesses who responded to the survey reported that their revenues from the first quarter of 2020 were down by 40% or more from the same quarter a year earlier. Another 21.2% of businesses reported their revenues had decreased by 20% to 40% over the same period. More information here.
Yesterday, Prime Minister Trudeau announced that the federal, provincial, and territorial governments had come together and agreed to a set of common principles for restarting the Canadian economy, based on shared understanding and appreciation of what science and experts are telling us. The statement identifies the criteria that need to be in place before we can go back to work and school, or see neighbours and friends. It also acknowledges the importance of a gradual approach and that different parts of the country will ease restrictions at different times. More information here and here.
Businesses which use offshore tax havens will not be eligible for COVID-19 bailout program funds. The Prime Minister made the declaration yesterday during Canada’s first virtual sitting of the House of Commons. More information here.
Minister of Small Business, Export Growth and International Trade Mary Ng spoke with her New Zealand counterpart yesterday. A readout of the call is here.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, François-Philippe Champagne organized a call with his counterparts from countries affected by COVID-19, including Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, Indonesia, Peru, Singapore, South Africa, Turkey and the United Kingdom yesterday. A readout of the call is here.
Premier Ford announced the Ontario government will expand the list of essential workers eligible to receive free emergency child care during the COVID-19 outbreak. Added to the list of those who will benefit include grocery store and pharmacy workers, Truck Drivers (Class A and Class D), workers in retirement homes, and others. More information here.
During his news conference today, the Premier asked prospective visitors to Ontario to not come to the province. “I emphasis, the people who don’t live in Ontario, we welcome you another time, we just can’t have you into our province at this point,” said the Premier. More information here.
Following the Provincial announcement of its framework for reopening the economy, Mayor Tory said that some restrictions could be lifted in the City by the end of May, so long as residents continue to physically distance over the coming weeks and continue to bring down the number of new cases.
Speaking with CP24 yesterday, the Mayor said: It (the framework) said that if we have two to four weeks of steadily declining new cases and what not, then you can move to phase one of the reopening so as much as we don’t want to hear what it is saying that means two to four weeks more of real disciplined physical distancing, staying home and not doing the things that we want to do will get us to the stage where some businesses can start to reopen.” More information here.
While this phase of physical distancing may be coming to an end, the City is still considering any and all measures to ensure there isn’t a spike in new cases over the coming weeks and months. That includes cancelling other events including Canada Day celebrations and the Santa Claus Parade. More information here.
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